Uncertainty Remains Over Indiana Voucher Program

By Jeff Neumeyer

August 17, 2011 Updated Aug 17, 2011 at 10:29 AM EST

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana's NewsCenter) --- Proponents of school vouchers in Indiana celebrated a victory in the courts on Monday, but the issue may not be settled just yet.

Parents and schools could be squirming if a later court ruling goes the other way.

Parochial schools like Bishop Dwenger, that are accepting voucher students, got some good news when an Indianapolis judge refused to grant a temporary injunction against the voucher program.

Blackhawk Christian School officials were also paying close attention to the injunction question, as 44 voucher recipients are set to enroll at Blackhawk for the first time this fall.

But the claim from the Indiana State Teachers Association, that vouchers violate a state constitutional ban on sending tax dollars to religious institutions, must still be argued in court.

If voucher opponents prevail, what will happen to kids who start the year in a private school?

Al Jacquay/Fort Wayne Education Assn.: " Will those parents still keep their child in a private or parochial school, despite the additional cost, and will the money have to be sent back to the public school?"

Supt. Bill Hartman/Blackhawk Christian Schools: " In a lot of ways it would be relaxing to see it settled, on the other hand, I think this is a discussion that has to be had, I think it's a national discussion."

The teacher's union is fighting vouchers, because they can divert money from public schools.

Fort Wayne Community Schools, like others around the state, counts on approximately $5,500 in tax support for every child that enrolls in the district.

When kids leave for private schools, the money goes with them, so there's a lot at stake in the dispute.




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