Meyer v. Nebraska Case Brief

Summary of Meyer v. Nebraska (1923)

Relevant Facts: Petitioner taught German at a grade school and he was convicted under a Nebraska law that prohibited teaching of foreign language in grade schools.

Issue: Under constitutional law, did this law violate the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment?

Holding: Yes.

Court’s Rationale/Reasoning: Here the state’s objective was to promote assimilation and civic development but this objectively was not reasonably related to the regulation.

Education and acquisition of knowledge is a fundamental right, and are matters which should be “diligently promoted.” Reasonable regulations for all schools are not at issue here, including regulating that English be taught in public schools; State regulations are not at issue here either.

Rule: Liberty means more than freedom from bodily restraint.

Important Dicta: N/A.

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