To the Editor:
In their Nov. 19, 2008, letter to the editor, Nina S. Rees and Doug Mesecar invoke “innovation” to push the discredited school voucher idea. They carefully avoid mentioning that “well-established private schools” either charge tuition in the range of $25,000, and are thus beyond the reach of a voucher plan such as the one they cite, or are faith-based schools that exist largely for the purpose of pervasive sectarian indoctrination and generally practice forms of discrimination and selectivity that would be intolerable in public schools.
In any event, millions of voters from coast to coast have shown conclusively in 25 statewide referendums that they don’t want to pay taxes to support nonpublic schools through vouchers or any other means.
By all means, let’s have more carefully thought-out innovation in education, but there is no good reason why this cannot be done in religiously neutral public schools that exist to serve all children and that do not discriminate by religion or ideology in hiring teachers.
Americans for Religious Liberty
Silver Spring, Md.
A version of this article appeared in the December 10, 2008 edition of Education Week as Innovative Practice Can be Fostered in Religiously Neutral Public Schools