Friday, March 21, 2003

Tax Credit Gold Rush

I Love this. Tax credits are my preference when it comes to school choice. Today's Orlando Sentinel reports on the demand for tax credit scholarships in Florida:

More than 15,000 children receiving the scholarships already have exhausted the $50 million that lawmakers allowed for the program last year.

Thousands of students are sitting on waiting lists, with little chance of participating this fall unless other children drop out or lawmakers expand the program.

Although voucher advocates expected that parents would jump at a chance to send their kids to private schools, they were surprised by the frenzy of interest, especially because there was little advertising.

About 55,000 people applied for the scholarships, which are available to children who qualify for free or reduced-price lunches in public schools, according to the Florida Department of Education.

One argument that is always made against vouchers and tax credits is that every private school will raise their tuition to the minimum amount of the voucher or scholarship. In Milwaukee and Florida, the evil private schools, who are only concerned with making profits on the backs of children, but do not charge the full scholarship amount, have returned the money to the state to allow additional children to participate. In Florida, many private schools charged less than $3,500 per child. Leftover money allowed about 600 more kids to participate, according to the state.

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