The Kentucky Legislature will not enact a voucher bill this session!

Here is one reason why: Pastors for Kentucky Children stood strongly against the bill and in favor of public schools. Reverend Sharon Felton led the way in Kentucky. Please read her wonderful letter in support of public schools and the principle of separation of church and state.

She writes:

Pastors for Kentucky Children is a grassroots movement of pastors and lay people who want to support, encourage and advocate for our local public schools. Our teachers, administrators and staff are on the front lines when it comes to caring for our children and we are praying that you and your colleagues will give them all the resources they need to fulfill this calling. We implore state legislators to vote down scholarship tax credits, or any legislation that funnels money away from public schools. Public schools are our future, our public trust. Public schools educate and serve all students. Imagine what they could do if they were fully funded! If they had enough counselors, librarians, teachers, technology, and on and on! Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could stop collecting box tops to provide for our schools?

Our children deserve the highest-quality, free public education. They deserve to have the best faculty, facilities and future our state has to offer.

We are opposed to scholarship tax credits because they violate the separation of church and state. As clergy, we do not want government money or interference in our religious schools. There is not a church, temple, synagogue or mosque that wants government to fund our educational programs. Taxpayers, in turn, do not want their money going to pay for these religious education alternatives. Public money must stay with public schools. Private schools have flourished for decades without public money, they will continue to do so.

The group that started the Pastors for Children movement on behalf of public schools is Pastors for Texas Children, led by Charles Foster Johnson, which stopped vouchers in Texas one legislative session after another, and inspired similar groups in other states, where pastors don’t want to be dependent on government funding, knowing that where money flows, control eventually follows.

Here is another reason for the defeat of vouchers: Teachers walked out of their schools, rallied at the state capitol, and stopped the momentum towards vouchers.

Parents in SOS Kentucky and “Dear JCPS” spoke out against vouchers.

No vouchers in Kentucky this session. As public awareness builds in support of public schools that 90% of children attend, vouchers will stay dead.