Pierce v. Society of Sisters

PETITIONER:Walter M. Pierce, Governor
RESPONDENT:Society of Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary
LOCATION: Oregon State Legislature

DECIDED BY: Taft Court (1925-1930)
LOWER COURT: Federal district court

ARGUED: Mar 16, 1925 / Mar 17, 1925
DECIDED: Jun 01, 1925

George E. Chamberlain – for Pierce as appellant in No. 584
J. P. Kavanaugh – for the appellee in No. 583
William D. Guthrie – for the appellee in No. 583
Willis S. Moore – for the appellants in No. 583 and the appellant in No. 584
John C. Veatch – for the appellee in No. 584
Albert H. Putney – for Pierce as appellant in No. 584

Facts of the case

The Compulsory Education Act of 1922 required parents or guardians to send children between the ages of eight and sixteen to public school in the district where the children resided. The Society of Sisters was an Oregon corporation which facilitated care for orphans, educated youths, and established and maintained academies or schools. This case was decided together with Pierce v. Hill Military Academy.


Did the Act violate the liberty of parents to direct the education of their children?