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Voucher Advocates Get Schooled: Private School Teacher Slams ‘School Choice Week’

“National School Choice Week,” a propaganda initiative created by the forces that want you to pay taxes to support someone else’s religious school, is still two months away. But some educators are already pushing back against an onslaught of misinformation.

In an open letter published by the Huffington Post, Steve Nelson of Manhattan’s prestigious Calhoun School told voucher backers they’d have to campaign without him. Read more

Motto Mania: Pa. Lawmaker Proposes Religious Statement For Public Schools

A Pennsylvania state legislator is pushing a bill that would require public schools in the state to post “In God We Trust” signs – but he insists religion has nothing to do with it.

Rep. Rick Saccone (R-Allegheny/Washington) says he merely wants to honor the anniversary of the first appearance of “In God We Trust” on coins, which occurred 150 years ago. Read more

A Bad Idea By Design: Pa. Lawmakers Revive Creationism Push

Creationism is stealing headlines again in Pennsylvania.

Eight years after Americans United successfully challenged the Dover School District’s attempt to push creationism in public schools, lawmakers are at it again. State Representative Stephen Bloom (R-Cumberland) is now seeking co-sponsors for a bill that would allow students to question evolutionary theory.
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Fifty Years Of Freedom: Celebrating The Supreme Court’s Decision Against Coercive Religion In Public Schools

Fifty years ago today, the U.S. Supreme handed down one of its most important church-state rulings. In School District of Abington Township v. Schempp, the high court ruled 8-1 that state-mandated programs of Bible reading and prayer in public schools are unconstitutional.

Five decades later, the ruling in Schempp (and its companion case, Murray v. Curlett) remains widely misunderstood. Part of this is due to a deliberate campaign of misinformation by Religious Right groups, which have distorted the scope of the decision. Read more

The Bishop’s Blunder: Let’s Keep Hitler Out Of The ‘School Choice’ Debate

Leaders of the Roman Catholic hierarchy in Pennsylvania were pretty excited about the possibility of a private school voucher subsidy passing in the state. Gov. Tom Corbett was solidly behind the program, and it was assumed that an influx of conservative legislators in the state Senate and House of Representatives would back the scheme. Read more

Voucher Victory!: Scheme To Award Taxpayer Funds To Religious Schools Collapses In Pennsylvania

Good news from Pennsylvania: A hotly contested school voucher plan has failed to pass the state House of Representatives.

Gov. Tom Corbett has been pushing this legislation since he was elected in 2010. Under the scheme, vouchers were aimed at families earning no more than 185 percent of the federal poverty level ($41,000 for a family of four) whose children attend schools that are in the bottom 5 percent in terms of standardized test performance. Read more

Taxation For Religion?: Pa. Governor Proposes School Voucher Scheme

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett (R) last week promoted an “education reform” plan that includes taxpayer-funded school vouchers for tuition at religious and other private schools.

The proposal is supposedly targeted at low-income families with kids in “failing” public schools. The vouchers would permit these students to transfer to other private or public schools, including religious schools, provided the school chooses to accept the student.

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Armey Invades Pennsylvania: Former House Majority Leader Holds Tea Party For School Vouchers

I’ve had occasion to hear followers of the Tea Party speak at Religious Right gatherings. To put it mildly, they seem to be very perturbed over government spending. They claim they want lower taxes, less spending and smaller government.

So what are they doing in Pennsylvania demanding that the state government create a massive new welfare program for religious and other private schools? Read more

Starving The Schools: In The States, Voucher Boosters Play Reverse Robin Hood With Tax Dollars

Across the country, public schools are feeling the pinch of the economic downturn. The school system my daughter and son attend has increased class sizes, and some popular programs are on the chopping block.

This, then, would seem to be a poor time to divert tax money into religious and other private schools. (Learn more here.) Yet consider what’s going on in several states: Read more

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