Paul LePage and Stephen Bowen, commissioner of Education, have done it again.

The first of four bills dealing with new rules for schools would give public tuition dollars to religious schools. They feel if private schools such as Erskine Academy and Maine Central Institute educate predominantly public school students and receive public funding, it discriminates against parents who want to send their children to a religious school of comparable educational caliber. That is a lie.

Yes, Erskine Academy and MCI are private schools, but LePage and Bowen either forgot (which I don’t believe) or conveniently left out the fact that the towns those private schools are in do not have high schools.

In the case of China and South China or other towns in the area, town officials can send their students to Erskine or to Waterville, Winslow or Augusta. Subsidies come from the state to those towns.

Our forefathers in the late 18th century wrote the Constitution for the new country after the Articles of Confederation failed.

When the document went out to the 13 states, the leaders of some states wanted more liberties before they signed. The Constitutional Convention convinced those states to sign and then it would add amendments called later the Bill of Rights.

The first amendment begins with “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

We do not and never have in this country taxed churches or their properties. Our forefathers did this to stop any government from taxing religions out of existence. Therefore, we have separation of church and state.

No subsidies from the state should be given private religious schools.

Joyce Bushey


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