Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear has filed a defense of his decision to shut all K-12 schools in the state to slow the spread of the coronavirus using the nation's highest court.

In the response filed with the U. S. Supreme Court on Friday, Beshear claimed that religious schools had not been singled out and, therefore, you shouldn't have for “this Court's intervention.”

“The Executive Order at issue applies to all private and public elementary schools in the Commonwealth, 'religious or otherwise,'” the brief read. “It doesn't prohibit religious worship; it doesn't treat religious schools more harshly than secular ones; and 'there is no evidence that the challenged restrictions were 'targeted' or 'gerrymandered' to make sure an impact on religious groups.'”

Beshear's school closure order was challenged by Danville Christian Academy which claimed it infringed on its First Amendment religious freedom rights. Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron joined the lawsuit.

Beshear’s brief stated that the order “does not mention religion whatsoever,” and noted that it's a temporary measure put in place with regard to public safety in this “third wave” of the virus in Kentucky.

On Monday, the attorney general filed an emergency application using the U.S. Supreme Court, asking a legal court to take up a legitimate challenge from the governor's executive orders halting in-person education across the state.

Cameron hopes the high court will overturn a decision by the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, which had overruled a lesser court's decision last month, ruling that Beshear's order didn't target religious schools.

“[The executive order] applies to all private and public elementary and secondary schools within the Commonwealth, religious or else; it is therefore neutral and of general applicability and need 't be justified with a compelling governmental interest,” the appellate court judges wrote.

According to Beshear's brief to SCOTUS, allowing K-12 religious schools to reopen while others remained on remote learning “may risk creating a troubling hierarchy of Constitutional rights.”

“To pick out religious schools for special therapy at a time when so many parents are making sacrifices to handle the painful but necessary task of virtual education, would risk undermining the beliefs in peaceful coexistence and religious pluralism,” the brief read.

In an associated development Friday afternoon, 38 U.S. Senators filed a brief using the high court asking they be permitted to join the suit meant for Danville Christian Academy. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky were among them.