THURSDAY
March 16, 2000
volume 11, no. 54
To print out entire text
of This weekend's issue, go to
SECTION ONE
SECTION TWO
SECTION THREE

NEWS & VIEWS     Acknowledgments
Articles provided through Catholic World News and Church News at Noticias Eclesiales and International Dossiers, Daily Dispatches and Features at ZENIT International News Agency. CWN, NE and ZENIT are not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provide this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

FLORIDA JUDGE STRIKES DOWN SCHOOL VOUCHERS

    PENSACOLA, Florida (CWNews.com) - A state judge struck down Florida's fledgling school voucher program on Tuesday, saying the state constitution requires the government to provide a free, public school system.

    Circuit Judge L. Ralph Smith said the 53 children currently enrolled in the pilot program may finish out the school year, but they will not be granted tuition vouchers for next year. "Tax dollars may not be used to send the children of this state to private schools," Smith said. The judge did not consider any evidence, relying solely on the language of the state constitution.

    Gov. Jeb Bush was "extremely disappointed by the judge's ruling," said spokesman Elizabeth Hirst. She contended that thousands of Florida students already attend private schools with public funds, referring to programs that serve children with disabilities and special needs. She said Bush will continue to fight for the program. The decision will be appealed to the 1st District Court of Appeal, but both sides agreed the case is unlikely to end before it is considered by the Florida Supreme Court.

    Under Florida's voucher law, students at public schools that earn a failing grade two years out of four can ask for vouchers that use tax dollars to pay for private school tuition. Only two of Florida's 2,500 public schools -- both elementary schools in Pensacola -- now qualify.

          

March 16, 2000
volume 11, no. 54
NEWS & VIEWS

To print out text of Today's issue, go to:
SECTION ONE | SECTION TWO | SECTION THREE

The DAILY CATHOLIC Search for anything
from the last three
years in past issues of
the DailyCATHOLIC: