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Letter: Tax credits for scholarships

Siddiqa Majidi, a guidance counselor at Crescent School

Siddiqa Majidi, a guidance counselor at Crescent School in Hempstead, attends a forum in East Williston. (Oct. 17, 2013) Credit: Danielle Finkelstein

The proposed Education Investment Tax Credit ["Interfaith appeal," News, Oct. 18] would allow tax credits for donations to public or private schools. This not only would help public schools, but keep private and religious schools open by helping low-income students get a good education at a far lower cost.

Parental choice in education is one of the few ways we help both the poor and the taxpayers. School taxes are at least 60 percent of property taxes, and in Port Washington, a public school teacher with a master's degree can earn as much as $133,300 after 25 years, plus benefits. I estimate that benefits are an additional $35,000 annual cost to taxpayers.

Most religious schools educate children for half the per-pupil cost of public schools.

We pay Medicare taxes and can choose my hospital. We all pay school taxes. Why can't parents be free to choose any accredited school for a child? Even if we limited this scholarship credit to half the amount we pay per public schoolchild, taxpayers would still save money every year. It's a win for everyone except teachers unions.

Frank J. Russo Jr., Port Washington

Editor's note: The writer serves on the executive committee of Long Islanders for Educational Reform.
 

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