I’m not convinced the Wichita model will survive IRS scrutiny. Current rules require all charitable giving over a certain small value to be acknowledged with a receipt from the charity that affirms “no goods or services were received in exchange for this donation.” How exactly do the Wichita diocese parishes provide such a receipt with a clean conscience? The taxman cometh.
Bennett touches on IMO the REAL way forward to vouchers but doesn’t see the final answer. He grasps the fact that continued catholic school closures are costing public school systems BILLIONS in additional enrollment, but voucher advocates never build on that.
What we need to do is some serious study and math to determine a voucher level that actually has the long term effect of INCREASING the public school funding level per public school student. Current voucher efforts focus on getting ALL of the tuition paid for. Bad idea because public school advocats see it as a threat to their funding.
Say a local public school district has 25,000 kids and spends $10,000 each on average. (my local district spends more!). In the district, there are two catholic schools with a total enrollment of 350 kids. As usual, those schools are struggling to keep enrollment and COULD house 500 kids easily with 28 kid classes. If nothing is done and those schools eventually close, the public school will absorb another $3,500,000 in costs with NO additional tax base to get it from. On the other hand, if that district offered a $1,500 voucher program to parents who used the local private schools and those two schools surged to full 500 kid enrollment, the district will be paying out $750,000 to private school parents, but saving ((500-350)* $10,000) - $750,000 = **$750,000 **in the process!
You heard it here first folks! The public schools could ENHANCE their overall funding by offering modest vouchers to private school parents. The fact that public schools are universally opposed to the very concept proves that funding is NOT their primary concern regarding vouchers. Pride is. They HATE being consistently shown up by private schools and WANT them stomped out, even if it really isn’t in their own best financial interest.