ACLU Wants Religion Out Of Ohio Mentorship Program

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A leading civil-rights organization is objecting to a religious requirement attached to $10 million in new Ohio educational mentorship grants.

In a letter Wednesday to Gov. John Kasich and Superintendent Richard Ross, the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio said mandating that all Community Connectors proposals include a church or faith-based organization "raises serious questions about the constitutionality of the mentoring program."

The grant program is among Kasich's key education initiatives, announced during his 2014 State of the State speech. Its aim is providing students with adult role models from their communities.

The Ohio Department of Education has held regional information sessions and a webcast to explain the program. The application window runs Dec. 1 through Feb. 20.

Kasich's spokesman says the administration doesn't comment on potential legal action.