Thursday, February 28, 2008

Thank You MCC for hurting Catholic Education.

In a recent article in the Catholic Standard (“State funding cut for text books to non-public schools” Feb. 21, 2008 Page 7), funding for the Maryland Nonpublic Textbook/Technology Loan program has been cut by about 10% or $400,000.

For those of you who do not know, the program provides non-religious textbooks, software, and hardware to non-public schools. For example, you can purchase English books or at least defray some of the cost on a per pupil basis.

Now, you may ask why do you blame the Maryland Catholic Conference (MCC)? The answer is very simple. They are supporting a number of programs which call for increases in funding, such as in-state tuition rates for illegal aliens.*

In fact, if you go to this week's paper copy of the Catholic Standard (Feb. 28 Page 6), Julie Varner the MCC's point person on support for illegal aliens, testified in front of the Maryland Senate Education, Health and Environmental Affairs Committee in opposition to the denial of instate tuition for illegal aliens.

Personally, I just love her comment that illegal aliens are "in full compliance with federal immigration law." I guess entering the country without a visa or Green Card or overstaying your visa constitutes full compliance with federal law. As my friend would say: "What the heck have you been drinking?"

By lobbying for these other programs, they are only causing our legislators to cut current programs. For not announcing and targeting the lawmakers who do not support our issues, it only increases their attacks upon us, knowing that nothing will happen.

These cuts only hurt our ever stretched Catholic schools by driving up the costs and driving away students. St. Ignatius in Ft. Washington, MD will close in the Fall because there are simply not enough students and the parish cannot afford to pump another $250,000 plus into it.

So, I offer my congratulations to Julie Varner, Dick Dowling (Executive Director) and Mary Ellen Russell (Dep. Director for Education & Family Issues) of the Maryland Catholic Conference (MCC) on helping Catholic school families’ pay just a little bit more in tuition and fees next year.

Soon there won’t be any Catholic elementary schools and you put more focus on helping illegal aliens.

*For those of you in Annapolis, you call it “undocumented workers.” It means those who have either entered the country illegally or have overstayed their visas.

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