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Re: John Roberts
Here's where the different philosophies come in based on fact and my experience. There is a vast difference between a "private school" and a "religious" school. In a "good" neighborhood, a public school offers a lot more than its comparative diocesan neighbor, more activities and opportunities along with teachers with better credentials. My kids originally started in a public school that was high ranked. Many of it's students were children of UN diplomats and I thought the diversified experience would be beneficial. My younger daughter developed an illness that required home schooling for three years. When she was able to resume normal schooling, the student population had greatly changed to one where the bulk were non-English speaking. Her instructors advised me not to send her back because the level had dropped significantly to accommodate the kids who were behind because of the language barrier. The same thing happened in Bayside where Asiatic students were predominant but the ranking did not drop and probably even climbed because of the children's and parent's diligence. In most cases, the families of those who choose to send their children to "religious" school alternatives are lower to middle income folks who are leery of sending their child to their local public school for various reasons. It isn't cheap. The average cost is in the vicinity of $4,800 for elementary school and $11,200 for high school. There may be a reduced price for more than one child. Unless there has been some taxation changes I'm not aware of, there is no exemption for that expense.
The cost of educating a non-English speaking child in public school was approximately $20,000/per year in 2015. The odds are that the majority of them are from families not paying school taxes.
I do not think the separation of religion and state should apply when it comes to the basic schooling of young people when religious affiliation is not a requirement.
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