Catholic Schools Host Forums to Urge Lawmakers’ Support for Textbook/Technology Loan Program Funding

January 04, 2005

Hundreds of students, parents and teachers from Catholic and other nonpublic schools in Maryland will participate in 16 simultaneous legislative forums on Thursday, January 6, 7:00 p.m.-8:30 p.m. to urge the General Assembly to continue support for the Nonpublic School Textbook/Technology Loan Program. Under this program, nonpublic schools in Maryland may borrow nonreligious textbooks and computer hardware/software for use by students. In addition, legislators will be urged to include nonpublic school teachers in the state’s Quality Teacher Incentive Tax Credit. Currently available only to public school teachers, this credit assists in offsetting the cost of courses related to teacher certification.

Since 2000, Maryland’s budget has included $3 million-$6 million annually for the textbook/technology loan program, which is less than one percent of the $3.7 billion spent annually on public schools. In 2003-04, Catholic and other nonpublic schools educated 143,000 K-12 students, saving the state more than $1.3 billion in per-pupil expenditures.

The following schools in the Archdiocese of Washington will host forums, which will include a brief presentation on legislative goals of the state’s Catholic and other nonpublic schools, presentations by students and teachers, and remarks from local legislators. Media are welcome to attend. Media contact: Jennifer Reed, Archdiocese of Washington, 301-853-4562.

St. John the Evangelist School, 10201 Woodland Drive, Silver Spring – Legislators expected to attend are Senators Sharon Grosfeld (D), Rona Kramer (D) and Leonard Teitelbaum (D), and Delegates Henry Heller (D), Sheila Hixson (D), Richard Madaleno, Jr. (D), Carol Petzold (D) and Herman Taylor (D).

St. Mark School, 7501 Adelphi Road, Hyattsville – Legislators expected to attend are Delegates Tawanna Gaines (D), Anne Healey (D), Justin Ross (D) and Victor Ramirez (D).

Archbishop Neale School, 104 Port Tobacco Road, La Plata – Legislators expected to attend are the President of the Senate, Senator Mike Miller, Jr. (D), and Delegates Louis Hennessy (D), Murray Levy (D) and Joseph Vallario, Jr. (D).

The forums are sponsored annually by the Maryland Federation of Catholic-School Families to coincide with the start of the General Assembly’s Legislative Session. For more information the position of Catholics on Maryland legislative issues, visit www.mdcathcon.org.

Contact:
Jennifer Reed
Asst. Dir. of Communications, Schools
301-853-4562
[email protected]