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15 Croups Form Body to Fight N. Y. State Aid to Religious Schools

March 7, 1967
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Fifteen civic, educational and religious organizations joined today in announcing formation of a statewide Committee for Public Education and Religious Liberty to oppose any changes in the State Constitutional provision barring public aid to parochial schools.

Establishment of the committee, which uses the acronym PEARL, was announced at a news conference in Stephen Wise Congress House. Spokesmen said the group would work “to inform the public about the danger to public education and church-state separation posed by efforts to water down or destroy” Article XI, Section 3 of the New York Constitution at the Constitutional Convention opening next month in Albany. The provision forbids state grants “directly or indirectly” to any school “under the control or direction of any religious denomination.

The 15 sponsors of PEARL are: American Ethical Union; American Jewish Committee, New York Chapter; American Jewish Congress, New York Metropolitan Council; Americans for Democratic Action; Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith; National Council of Jewish Women; National Women’s Conference, American Ethical Union; New York Civil Liberties Union; New York State Council of Churches, New York State Federation of Reform Synagogues; Protestant Council of the City of New York; Public Education Association; State Congress of Parents and Teachers, New York City District; United Federation of Teachers; United Parents Association. Leo Pfeffer, special counsel of the American Jewish Congress and professor of constitutional law at Long Island University, is serving as temporary chairman of PEARL.

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