Something tells us our Republican friends in the N.C. General Assembly didn’t see this one coming.
Once they took control of the legislature, GOP lawmakers wasted no time going to bat for private school vouchers. The new assistance program hurts public schools, in our view, because it takes money that would go to systems like Nash-Rocky Mount and Edgecombe County and instead helps students pay tuition at private schools.
Republican lawmakers defend the program, saying it gives all North Carolina students a choice. A little competition is healthy for the N.C. Department of Public Instruction, they say.
So would you care to guess which private school in North Carolina is leading the pack in terms of voucher applications?
The Greensboro Islamic Academy.
That’s right. As the Greensboro News & Record has pointed out, the same legislature that passed a bill banning the use of sharia law in North Carolina doesn’t seem to mind the idea of tax dollars going to a private school where sharia law might be taught.
Some 170 voucher applications have been submitted so children can attend the Greensboro Islamic Academy, according to the N.C. State Education Assistance Authority.
Islamic worshipers certainly have a right to believe as they wish and to bring up their children in their faith. But we don’t really think North Carolina tax dollars should go toward that purpose. Nor should those dollars be diverted from public schools to go to other private academies, either.
Republican legislators apparently are much more open-minded about publicly supporting Islam education than we ever would have imagined.