Seperation of church and state is true in all states. and while we here tend to be a self selected group, and tend to value educations. (well, i think we do.. and i do) it is not true that parents will always select the best qualified teachers.. if they value religion more than science -- they might well chose to send their kids to sub rate religious schools, rather than top notch public ones. (and yes, i have seen it happen. there are lots of sub rate catholic schools in NY.. there are some great ones too, but the schools vary greatly in quality.)-- and No, state can not enforce the same standards for teachers in catholic schools as in public. NYC public school teacher must have BA/BS to start, and must get masters by year 5 of teaching. they must also pass a licencing test. Catholic schools are exempt from those requirements. Have i personally known catholic school teachers who held PH.D's? yes, and i have also known catholic school teachers who only had a junior college degree (2 years of college.)
many catholic HS, agree, volunteraly, to meet state standards, (it makes it easier for college admissions) but they are not required to.