Private schools like Indiana senate bill

As Indiana legislators continue to debate the budget in special session, local supporters of Senate Bill 528, a scholarship tax credit program, say they are looking forward to the advantages it could provide in private education.

The legislation is a win-win situation for everyone, said John Schultz, principal at Crown Point-based Trinity Lutheran School.

The Indiana School Scholarship Tax Credit program -- introduced during the regular session of the Indiana General Assembly -- would provide a 50 percent state tax credit for contributions to scholarship programs that would help low-income families afford a private education.

Fr. Ron Nuzzi, director of the Remick Leadership Program at ACE at the University of Notre Dame, said the scholarship tax program is very popular in other states, especially Arizona and Pennsylvania.

The measure gives parents a choice that they currently don't have, said Barbara O'Block, superintendent of the Catholic Diocese of Gary.

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"It would involve some work for us," she said. "We would have to set up a scholarship granting organization, but it would be well worth the effort."

O'Block said the diocese has talked about developing a program that would include all five diocese in Indiana: Indianapolis, Fort Wayne-South Bend, Gary, Lafayette and Evansville.

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