Published DateTo the editor,
Cathy Merwin's endorsement in Tuesday's paper described the new education tax credit program as badly as any letter I've yet seen. As one of the bills drafters, I am confident in reporting:
— The program has been ruled constitutional in at least eight state courts and the U.S. Supreme Court. It is NOT a voucher program, as some misguided have claimed.
— the program actually increases the amount spent on a per-pupil basis in the public school districts.
— It only serves low to moderate income families whose children aren't doing well in their assigned public schools. To repeal it now would harm only low-income people.
— It allows a student to attend any school in N.H. which fits their learning style including public, private or home schools.
— It contains a financial safety net for the school district if too many students leave one school district (shouldn't that be a red flag?).
— The money that creates the scholarships is voluntarily donated by businesses who receive a tax credit in an amount similar to five other tax credit programs in this state.
— It was designed to save the state money.
— It increases parental involvement in their child's education, which studies show improve the outcome for the child. That is, they do better!
— It has been successful in every state it's been tried.
Here in N.H., so far 500 lower-income families have applied for scholarships. These families average five persons and an average family income of approximately $42,000. They applied while understanding this is not a "free ride". They must contribute to the new school their child attends and still, they want to leave their assigned public school. We should not deny these thoughtful, caring parents this opportunity to better their children's lives. The wealthy have school choice. So should the rest of us.