Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Why make it harder for special needs children?

It is hard to believe that some journalists would publish things that were not true. It is hard to understand why they would print something that could hurt our children. It seems to me that the authors of such articles against the special needs legislation are being swayed by superintendents or teachers' unions. Then I try to understand why they are trying to prevent this legislation from passing. Their arguments have nothing to stand on. They say it will take money away from the public schools, NO it will not! The problem is that when people hear that, they start to believe it. The money used for the scholarships will come from private donors, not money allocated for the schools. Some may say it is unconstitutional, but it is not. Testimony during the hearings in February proved it is not.

They say the private schools are not regulated like the public schools, but no one is forcing any child to enter into the schools or use the scholarships. The parents can make that decision, not the government.

I am a parent of a special needs child. I know parents like myself would really benefit from a program like this. It is extremely expensive to attend the private schools and even more expensive to attend the special schools. I am aware that some public schools do a great job of educating their special needs students, but not every public school does it well. We need to be looking out for those students...ones who are not getting what they need.

This scholarship tax credit program for special needs will allow the children to attend a public school in another district or use the money for an approved private school. Repeat: approved private school...not just any school will be allowed, meaning unstable, unreliable or unhealthy schools will not make the cut. This is another one of those false accusations floating around. Opponents say that the scholarships could be used at any private school, which could be a horrible school. Some people are even saying that if this passes, then it will allow the state to control the private schools...again, NOT TRUE!

Here is my point, all of the arguments I have heard are not accurate. The opponents are spreading false accusations which will only hurt the children of Missouri. We need to get the truth out there and encourage support for this legislation! The children need this support; their parents need this support.

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