Scholarships and choices are great (except for our K-12 schools)!
Politicians and bureaucrats at South Carolina’s State Department of Education seem to want it both ways.
Their taxpayer-funded publicists promote the importance of state scholarships for students attending colleges, universities, and vocational schools in South Carolina. They recently issued a press release (see photo) calling for greater awareness and utilization of the H.O.P.E., L.I.F.E and Palmetto Fellows Scholarships, which support students attending both public and private schools.
Similarly, State Superintendent Jim Rex has personally fundraised for non-profit scholarship granting organizations that serve low-income students making higher educational choices.
But, on the other hand, Jim Rex and his public school monopolist friends are adamantly opposed to providing similarly scholarship opportunities for students in grades K through 12 (even when the scholarships are privately funded)
According to Rex:
“Lowincome families won’t get any help from tax credits, and only a few lowincome families will have any hope of getting fulltuition “scholarships” – if that kind of assistance actually becomes available.” (4/23/09)
Maybe Rex think his own work for College Scholarships is similarly fruitless…
…or, maybe Rex is simply unaware of how large and powerful the impact of tax credits for Student Scholarship Organizations has been in other states:
ARIZONA: Over $21 million in donations since the program began in 2006, serving 2,044 low-income students in the first two school years.
FLORIDA: $253 million in donations in the three school years from 2005/06 to 2007/08, serving 76,514 low-income students from 2003/04 until 2007/08.
PENNSYLVANIA: Over 3,600 companies have pledged in excess of $350 million dollars to the programs. More than 44,000 low-income students were served last year and 30,000 the year before.
The fact is Rex certainly does know how popular and effective school choice is – he simply cares more about his own political power than the needs of students, the wants of parents, and the wallets of taxpayers.