Wednesday, August 08, 2007

FEMA and Catholic Schools

This little tidbit of news caught my eye:

Our Lady of Lourdes School in Slidell has secured a windfall of federal financing to rebuild its battered campus, which was deluged by floodwaters during Hurricane Katrina, the Federal Emergency Management Agency announced Monday.

The school will receive more than $10.6 million to construct a new facility along Westchester Place for pupils in prekindergarten through eighth grade, officials said.
$10.6 million! Wow! That's quite a lot of tax dollars going into a private, religious school. Now, I'm certainly not opposed to FEMA giving such assistance to any school, Catholic or otherwise; but I'm now curious to find out just how much FEMA has disbursed to all schools affected by Hurricane Katrina for rebuilding. My thinking is that public schools, supported by my tax dollars, should get first priority in any federal or state dollars distributed.

I am also a little bit curious as to how officials within the Archdiocese of New Orleans that oversee the Catholic education system of the diocese, were unaware of this grant. That strikes me as odd. The size of the award as well as the fact that it comes as a surprise smells a bit fishy, if you ask me.

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