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GLAA opposes school voucher resolution
From: GLAA Sent: Monday, May 04, 2009 6:02 PM To: D.C. Council Members Subject: Please oppose school voucher resolution
Dear Council Member:
We must regretfully ask you to oppose the “Sense of the Council Supporting Student Academic Continuity Resolution of 2009,” to be introduced by our friend Tommy Wells at the May 5 legislative meeting. Its stated purpose is “To declare the Sense of the Council in support of the actions taken by President Obama and the U.S. Department of Education to maintain continuity for children currently attending private school through the D.C. School Choice Incentive Program....”
GLAA has long opposed the congressionally imposed voucher system, which subsidized parochial and other private schools at taxpayers’ expense, as an assault upon home rule and the constitutional separation of church and state. It was an experimental program, and it has failed. Parents had no reasonable expectation that the program would continue indefinitely.
District voters overwhelmingly rejected vouchers (89% to 11%) in a referendum in 1981. Most of the federal funds used under the program wound up in the hands of Roman Catholic and other religiously-affiliated schools. Gay and lesbian students, teachers and employees of religious schools enjoy none of the anti-discrimination protections of the D.C. Human Rights Act. Such schools were free to subject students to homophobic teachings and practices while being subsidized from the public till.
While we defend the right of religious organizations to preach against us to their hearts’ content, we object in the strongest terms to subsidizing it with our tax dollars. We therefore respectfully ask you to vote against the “Sense of the Council Supporting Student Academic Continuity Resolution of 2009.”
Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, D.C.
P.O. Box 75265
Washington, D.C. 20013