The letter below written by Al Ward and submitted to the Hamilton Spectator clears up (again) the misunderstanding about publicly-funded Catholic schools:
It seems whenever this issue pops up there is some Roman Catholic School supporter who claims indignantly that since their taxes are directed to the Roman Catholic board that therefore they should enjoy the privilege of their own school system.
This is a falsehood that is repeated ad infinitum and seldom questioned, to the point that the uninformed believe it to be true.
After all, the Spectator printed it so it must be true.
If the information had been printed in an article there would have been a correction printed. My question is do you verify facts in letters before posting? In my opinion while letters to the editor should express opinion they should not be allowed as an instrument to perpetuate a falsehood.
I believe the Spectator has a duty to its readers to clarify the facts on funding. The following quotation clearly explains the reality that has existed since 1998. Each year, the Ottawa Carleton Roman Catholic school board places an ad in the Ottawa Citizen to advise that: “Your education taxes, at a rate mandated by the Province, are now pooled with those from all taxpayers in the Province. The money is then redistributed equally on a per pupil basis to all school boards in Ontario.”
“When you designate yourself as a separate school supporter, there is no longer a financial benefit to our Board. Rather, your designation guarantees a strong political voice through your elected representatives (Trustees) in ensuring your rights to a Catholic education…”
The information that Ward quotes can also be found on the Ottawa Carleton Roman Catholic School Board website on the “Direct your school support through MPAC” page and the “Annual Budget Process” page.