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Incoming Indiana schools chief dropping out of voucher suit

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Incoming state school Superintendent Glenda Ritz says she intends to remove herself as a plaintiff in a lawsuit that seeks to overturn the state's popular school voucher program.

Ritz, a school librarian, told The Associated Press on Tuesday that she would drop out of the legal challenge after a state Supreme Court hearing set for Wednesday and before she takes office Jan. 14.

The Democrat defeated Republican Superintendent Tony Bennett in the Nov. 6 election after campaigning against reform policies including the school voucher program, which opponents say undermines public education.

Ritz says she is pledged to uphold state law as the new state superintendent, and remaining part of the suit would present a conflict of interest.

But she says she still believes the current program is unconstitutional.

Enrollment in the nation's largest school voucher program has more than doubled since last year.

The Indiana Department of Education said Tuesday that more than 9,300 families have signed up for vouchers for the 2012-13 school year. That compares with about 3,900 who took part in the program's first year.

Families that take part in the School Choice Scholarship Program receive tax money to help pay the cost of private school. Under the program, vouchers can cover up to 90 percent of the cost of tuition, depending on a family's income. The actual value of the vouchers is less than the amount of tax money a public school would have received for that student.

The maximum value for students in grades one through eight is $4,500.

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  1. Those of you yelling to deport them all should at least understand that the law allows minors (if not from a bordering country) to argue for asylum. If you don't like the law, you can petition Congress to change it. But you can't blindly scream that they all need to be deported now, unless you want your government to just decide which laws to follow and which to ignore.

  2. 52,000 children in a country with a population of nearly 300 million is decimal dust or a nano-amount of people that can be easily absorbed. In addition, the flow of children from central American countries is decreasing. BL - the country can easily absorb these children while at the same time trying to discourage more children from coming. There is tension between economic concerns and the values of Judeo-Christian believers. But, I cannot see how the economic argument can stand up against the values of the believers, which most people in this country espouse (but perhaps don't practice). The Governor, who is an alleged religious man and a family man, seems to favor the economic argument; I do not see how his position is tenable under the circumstances. Yes, this is a complicated situation made worse by politics but....these are helpless children without parents and many want to simply "ship" them back to who knows where. Where are our Hoosier hearts? I thought the term Hoosier was synonymous with hospitable.

  3. Illegal aliens. Not undocumented workers (too young anyway). I note that this article never uses the word illegal and calls them immigrants. Being married to a naturalized citizen, these people are criminals and need to be deported as soon as humanly possible. The border needs to be closed NOW.

  4. Send them back NOW.

  5. deport now

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