As you may recall, the Supreme Court of the United States held that the state of West Virginia, which in this case was the West Virginia Board of Education, had the authority to decide who taught the state’s public schools. They did not, however, have authority to decide who taught the state’s public schools, the court said.
The court ruled that the Board of Education’s decision to allow Barnette to teach the state’s public schools violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment. West Virginia was forced to reverse the decision, but the justices were not satisfied with the outcome, saying that “all who teach [the state’s] children should be free to do so without any restraint of public opinion or fear of the consequences.
The court and the state have a lot in common. In a recent hearing the justices said the West Virginia board could provide a basis for the State Board of Education to decide the matter, but they did not say that it could not have a basis.
Another commonality is that they are both public bodies and they have a lot in common with the school board in Barnette. Barnette was the first public school in the US to allow students to earn a federal honor diploma by passing the state’s standardized test. The board of education in West Virginia, however, was not. One of the people who brought this to light was a teacher who taught students in West Virginia who had earned the honor diploma.
In both Barnette and West Virginia, the honor diploma is given after the students pass a state standardized test. In Barnette, the board of education requires that students write a paper that is graded by an official, and that the student be able to take the state standardized test after they give the paper. In West Virginia, however, the state test is optional. The honor diploma is given only to students who are able to take the test and pass.
While the honor diploma is the same in both states, the honor diploma is given in West Virginia after the students pass a test. The West Virginia board of education said it wasn’t fair to Barnette to give her the honor diploma because some of the students were allowed to retake the state test.
But that wasn’t the point. The point was that Barnette was able to take the test. The honor diploma is given to students who take the state test and pass. Barnette was able to take the test because she already went through the state school. Her father had a college education. The honor diploma was given after Barnette passed. So in essence, Barnette got the honor diploma because she was smart enough to pass the state test. And her father went to college.
It goes back to the very beginning of the educational system. It was an honor diploma.
The other three boards of education (and also the college boards for which the honor diploma has been given) had their own “receipts” that were given to students, but the grades used were not. The honor diploma had been given to them at the time of the test (and before they had their diplomas).