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Legislator outlines tax credit for private schools

It was legislation meant to provide a way for citizens and corporations a get a break on their state taxes and help offset the cost of student tuition at Georgia’s private schools. State Rep. David Casas (R-Lawrenceville) on May 25 spoke to parents at St. Paul Lutheran School in Peachtree City about the issues surrounding the Georgia Private School Tax Credit.

The Georgia Private School Tax Credit through House Bill 1133 was signed into law in 2008. House Bill 325, introduced this year and signed into law recently by Gov. Deal, raises the previous $50 million statewide limit on donations for education to $62.5 million.

Individuals can receive the tax credit when donating up to $1,000 while couples can receive the credit with donations up to $2,500. Corporations, said Casas, can receive credit for donating up to 75 percent of their tax liability.

The bottom line, said Casas, is “not about public schools and not about private schools. The main purpose of the bill and tax credit is to get students out of failing schools.”

Casas said the scholarships will not pay the entire cost of a given private school. The maximum scholarship amount a student can receive is approximately $8,000, he said.

Per state law, there are a number of non-profit Student Scholarship Organizations established to receive the donations and document them for the tax credit in conjunction with the Georgia Dept. of Revenue.



[quote=Casas The Jackass]"The bottom line is not about public schools and not about private schools. The main purpose of the bill and tax credit is to get students out of failing schools. DERP DERP DERP!”[/quote]

Perhaps this jackass can identify some of the "failing schools" here in Fayette county?

BHH's picture

The system of government run schools is over funded and under productive.

That is failing.

It's just a fact.

Too many factors are influencing government run education for it to be effective.

The lack of competition among educators and schools in general is enough reason that should get the government out of the school business.

The only schools the government should be running maybe is for disabled children where the cost would be prohibitive for parents to get private education.


hutch866's picture

Maybe you could offer up some facts to prove that point. Although I doubt it.

I yam what I yam

BHH's picture

This system is successful at only one thing and that is making a decent living at part time work for a lot of people.


BHH, you're definitely not from around here.

hutch866's picture

That's your facts huh, pretty slim. I can't attest to the other schools here in Fayette, but this year at FCHS, a full one third of the graduating class were honor students, in fact our schools here in Fayette are so bad that a University in DC gave my kid a substantial amount of money just to attend there. Let me ask again, you have any real facts, or you just blowing your usual smoke?

I yam what I yam

NUK_1's picture

Was at Starr's Mill graduation and 210 of 420 graduated with honors and SMHS doesn't have low standards either. I sure don't see the schools in Fayette as "failing" by any means, no matter how poorly the BOE operates.

BHH's picture

Stars Mill, only 50% with honors. I thought achieving over 50% was passing.


NUK_1's picture

What are you talking about? Half the class graduated with a GPA of 3.5 or higher and half had less than a 3.5. I have no idea what you mean by 50% being "passing" of anything when that's a "F" and also irrelevant to what has been posted about honor graduates.

the more clueless you sound about the High Schools in the area.

hutch866's picture


I yam what I yam

hutch866's picture

ONLY 50% passed with honors, ONLY? Do you even know what an Honor Grad is? Still waiting on a fact here.

So far the only fact you've put out here so far is that you're an idiot. But on the upside, you've proved it beyond a doubt.

I yam what I yam

BHH's picture

see #8 PTC Observer comment above.


honors does not indicate that 50% FAILED. Graduating with honors indicates that that 50% excelled. I do not know how many actually failed but I am sure that number is no way near 50%---.
Perhaps you should attend an Honors Night program once and see just how many awards are given for students with excellent grade point averages and how many also received scholarships or other awards for service. It makes you proud and makes you realize that we do have many good kids here who are doing the right thing. Most schools can be better than they are--and that is almost anywhere; but you will find when you have parents who take an interest in their children and their schools and set a good example the majority of students will do well. It really annoys me when I see people on here blog about the "tennis playing mothers" as if they have no interest in their children or their accomplishments--I personally know no 'tennis moms'but I know many who take part in their children's schools as do the fathers. When you see children excelling in school, you will usually see parents who work with the schools and their children to see that they make the best of their education. It not only takes the school and school personnel to make education effective, it also takes involved parents.
And by the way, I have not had a child in the school system for over forty years and none of them attended a Georgia school. I have mentored children in our local schools and have worked in other ways with the schools and students because I believe you should be involved with your community in any way you can. I have gotten as much as I have given by doing this.

BHH's picture

Where there's smoke there's fire.

It leads to the truth.


BHH, you're not from around here, are you?

BHH's picture

probably deeper here than yours.


I only speak from personal experience. Two kids educated in FC Public schools (one FC High, one McIntosh) bothare College graduates, one with two degrees and a "PE" after his name. For those who don't know, that's for "Professional Engineer". Of course they did come from an excellent gene pool!

I think when people talk about "school failures" (learned people), they are not talking about those who have the ability or were tutored excessively to get degrees from rated schools, but the ones who were not able for whatever reason.

A teenager's effort has much to do with all this, but the question is why are so many effortless, yet they are passed on from grade to grade and most do not attend college unless they are good athletes.

There are those who get degrees at 15-16 years of age in higher math or science but they are the exception, as are those who can't ever get there.

So much credence has been given to SAT scores that many schools have turned to cheating to indicate that their students are learning!
I don't think the Atlanta area is the only area doing that, plus we now "study for the SAT tests," and that only indicates that we can remember what we studied this week!

The teaching of manners, common sense, balancing a check book, budgeting, driving, dressing, and responsibility have all but disappeared.

With leveled grading, an "A" used to be a C+! We teach to the lowest level we have to teach!

Administrators are made very wealthy to perform these numbers in "whatever way it takes." Then move on to the next group who want good numbers.

Some of our schools are more noted for their partying, drugs, and wealth than for high intellect.

hutch866's picture

You and BHH seem to be on the same page, more's the pity.

I yam what I yam

BHH's picture

They probably would have excelled in any system.

Not everyone has a good gene pool.


Congratulations! I know others in Fayette County whose children are graduates of the FC schools and have done extremely well. The homes in Fayette County are still desirable because of the rating of FC schools. Bad mouthing in public the current school system is like cutting off your nose to spite your face. We invested here because of the school system. Some appear to be taking the right action: Go to Board meetings; be active in your neighborhood school; support good teachers; demand excellence in the classroom; volunteer in school activities. Community pride and involvement is what makes a district 'great'. I'm watching Waiting for Superman again. Not one school in Fayette County fits the description of a 'failing' public school. It seems that failure comes when a Board of Education does not keep current with fiscal and academic issues and allows a district to 'fall behind'. This happens when 'citizens' wait until 'failure' appears to loom in the distance - and then they do Monday quarterbacking.

NUK_1's picture

The fact is that the BOE in FC has been a disaster for decades and only through the very active efforts of the front-line (parents,students,teachers) has FC had success.

The 20mil max-out rate the BOE reached a while ago can't legally go any higher and all the years of incompetence has already shown up on everyone's tax bills for years. To think it won't start trickling down to the schools themselves is foolish and now more than ever FC parents are going to have to fight like hell to ensure a good education and a good FC school system.

Me? Sorry, my daughter just graduated SMHS and it's not a fight for me any more because I'm leaving PTC/FC after many decades. Good luck to everyone still there and I'll always be near the area and interested in FC, but you can have your FC commission, BOE, Steve Brown, Ballard, Smith, Maxwell, and Don Haddix all you want. I've had way past enough.

suggarfoot's picture


NUK_1's picture

Coweta is OK by me. Not perfect but not head-up-butt-stupid like FC can be and you can get more house/yard in Coweta than FC right now and just as good of neighborhoods. I also like the much easier access to I-85 and yeah, the development too.

suggarfoot's picture

years ago, when I moved here...Coweta was my 1st choice, so much prettier ...but bought in FC because all my friends kept saying the schools were sooo much better. I went against my instincts.

My child going to Flatt Rock and Sandy Creek was a huge disappointment and mistake. I was very disappointed in my area BOE...that being Smola...I don't fantasise anymore about what it could have been without her...I only know the nightmare it has been with her.

It is so sad that outspoken northern loud mouths with such limited education, that want to 'reform the south' can ruin it for others when they seek their dream and not that of the taxpayers.

I wish they would take her to the Clayton county line and kick her liberal butt across it! In fact, I don't know why she didn't move there in the 1st place...she would have been happy as a pig in dodo ...and not pulled the rest of us down with her personal agenda. But...with or without the dodo...a pig is a pig..

PTC Observer's picture

Nuk_1 better move over, there is going to be a whole lot of people leaving Fayette County in the coming years....watch the schools and their SAT scores to measure the exodus.

I can't tell you the number of times I have witnessed this in the past, Fulton, DeKalb, Clayton, now it looks like Fayette is next.

suggarfoot's picture

is the next Stone Mountain...people who gasped and waited too long to exhale ...never got their value out of their properly...it was just that fast.

PTC Observer's picture

You are dead right on this.

PTC Observer's picture

Perfect score is 2,400

Here's where we stand by state:


Have public schools failed? You have the facts, now you decide.

PTC isn't exactly Georgia now is it? It's more of a conglomeration of all those states with the high SAT scores! That is why we live here rather than in Macon!

Braves hit the skids tonight--shut out!

PTC Observer's picture

No PTC isn't Georgia, good observation there Ninja.

I thought we were talking about failed public schools. You know the ones we pay taxes to the Federal Gov't to fund. The public school system that the Feds so aptly run from afar by putting strings on that funding to make sure we have "quality" equal education throughout our great land.

They're doing a sterling job equalizing our education as the SAT scores graphically show.

Now how do you suppose we are going to solve this problem when about 60% of the students in public schools don't want to be there in the first place.

Good thing we have government to force them to be there so they can pull down those SAT results.

I don't think we need to live in a country where only 60% get educated!

The objective is to have 100% well educated at least through high school.

Whether they want it or not!

Given a choice maybe your kids wouldn't have gone!

Cyclist's picture

Article Source: AJC

Metro area graduation rates for 2010

Atlanta 66.3 percent

Cherokee County 82.4

Clayton County 81.6

Cobb County 87.3

DeKalb County 79.2

Fayette County 94.0

Forsyth County 89.7

Fulton County 85.3

Gwinnett County 84.7

Source: Georgia Department of Education

Caution - The Surgeon General has determined that constant blogging is an addiction that can cause a sedentary life style.


These are numbers submitted by the school districts!

We should all know now that when students leave one school and supposedly go to another, this dosn't always happen. They never graduate anywhere but are assumed to have done so.
However the school where the student left assumes they did transfer to another school, but nobody does the paperwork and keeps up with it!

Some do some of it, some do none of it, and all don't really care since the ignored paperwork looks better for the graduation rate.

Just another one of those little things that has caused our schools to deteriorate badly. We stress stats rather than exactness.

We are looking out for the administrators more than the students.

It is a serious thing when a student leaves school. Grades need to be transfered, troubled kids need to be explained, and it would seem we have enough principals, assistant principals, and aides to accomplish this followup.

I know some parents won't cooperate but that must be illegal--send the sheriff!

Whatever happened to the truant officers?

Are you<strong> implying </strong>that FC is not doing the job that the statistics indicate? Are students who graduate from FC schools not achieving in college or in the job arena? Are the teachers in FC resting on 'tenure' and not accomplishing the goal of educating students? Is the curriculum in the FC schools mediocre? Does the FC administration have low expectations for its staff and students? If so, then you and other interested citizens who are concerned about the children in Fayette County need to become involved:


There are many parents and citizens in this county who are involved. They are not going to wait around until the FC schools deteriorate. This district, like so many districts throughout the country, suffered because of the economy. There are citizens, like you, who are facing the realities of the problems of public education. Not all of the problems are at the front door of FC - yet. FC homeowners, citizens, parents - can and should be ahead of the game. Private schools also play the game of the 'lemons' - and low achievers are shown the door. Making sure that only FC residents attend our schools is not the only answer to providing an outstanding public education to our students. (I haven't heard of an out of district student bringing a gun to school) The advantage of FC is the majority of students come to school to learn; parents are supportive of the school; teachers and administration have high expectations. My concern at this time is the knowledge and ability of the members of the school board to support a superintendent who is a visionary in implementing new teaching methods and technology that are necessary for our students to compete in the global economy; supporting teachers by realizing that they need additional training and time to implement new methods using new technology. I hope that you are not one of those who apply what is happening in other districts as a 'given' that it is happening here without investigating and doing what you can to prevent the deterioration of FC schools.

There are more schools than Fayette County DM, and chances are due to economics of Fayette they are somewhat better in teaching and the students may be somewhat more intelligent and willing.

However, yes, I'll bet you a quarter that many students who leave Fayette County Schools are still counted as graduating without knowing that!
Same with those transferring in.

I am not interested in a "world economy" nor in how long it takes teachers to get training and give them more "time" as you say.
Teachers need to be sorted out as to their ability to get results and to fail those who can not do the work. There is no miracle training that forces that---only good administrators who want nothing else.

Already China is producing 50% more scientists, more Master degrees, more Doctorates, have created more research Institutes than we have in recent years.

Yes, Fayette is also slipping into a mediocre training cycle just maybe not as bad as other local and national schools.

We can not let Teachers blame school boards and School Boards blame Teachers and Principals every time a catastrophe happens.

We don't need any "visionaries" as Superintendents and especially making them millionaires for certain numbers in any fashion they wish to do it!

Sort out the unskilled Superintendent, Principals, and teachers, and their staffs down to those who are capable of starting at first grade with how to do math, science, write a paragraph correctly, spell correctly, and have an organized mind by the time they are in eighth grade, or send them to vocational school.

The last things we need are curve grading, teaching to the lowest common denominator in the room, and lowering everyone to a level of incompetence!

Check out Michelle Rhee's educational reform plan. She was actually ''fired' from the DC district because she fired 'failing' principals and teachers. A visionary, IMO, is one who is not afraid to buck the system and make the necessary changes in order to achieve excellence. Blame? Why is no one interested in 'improving'? Parents chose home schooling and private schools because that is their right to do so. Members of the BOE are elected. If the majority of the community are not pleased with their management of education in Fayette County - why are they re-elected? Striving for excellence in the Rhee's educational reform plan does not include curve grading, teaching to the lowest denominator or lowering everyone to a level of incompetence.

[quote]Yes, Fayette is also slipping into a mediocre training cycle just maybe not as bad as other local and national schools[/quote]

Fayette County can do something about it. Why? Take action now. See waitingforsuperman.com

Interesting dilemma. (Let's don't forget upgrading the education (teacher preparation) curriculum in college.)


So I take it you do think that there is some value in meaningful 'training'. Hmmmmm. Thanks for your input.

Yes, we need to hire Rhee here. No strings attached.

Do you think Atlanta would hire her? Not in a million years! Why, do you think?

You spend too much time making excuses for teachers needing more training, (on a GA Island, I presume.)

These are college graduates (maybe) (I know some have false Masters) and should be able to follow daily instructions!
We aren't looking for a way to determine what and how to teach, we already have known that for hundreds of years.
We just don't hire those who know or want to know how!

THey want to just get ALONG!

It is a social event, like church, to too many, and a pension is coming.

Einstein would have been placed in special ed. There are ways to evaluate students other than 'tracking'. . . Gates or Job may have been sent to 'vocational' schools. (Nothing wrong with vocational schools - but I think that today we have improved ways of evaluating students than the strategies used in the past.)

[quote]There are more schools than Fayette County DM[/quote]

I know - but the discussion involved Fayette County schools

I am for tracking...I fail to see how it does NOT work. I remember the three levels of reading group in elementary school. When your reading improved, you moved up. If it didn't improve then you stayed in the same group. Big deal. Everyone got what they "needed," not the same thing. Not everyone is going to be a rocket scientist. So what?

Tracking produced my generation and I don't think we're so bad. I may be good in math, but guess what? I am paying $1700 today for repairs on my truck because I suck, big time, at auto repair. Kids need options. We need tracking and vocational classes. All kids have strengths and weaknesses. Sort and group. The schools have only 12/13 years to get kids ready for life. Let's give them what they need to become productive members of society when they leave. As long as we have taught them how to think and have helped them to develop a work ethic, then they are aptly prepared to join society and make contributions on whatever level is possible for them.

The cliche...Einstein would have been placed in special ed...maybe if his parents got a lawyer!! hahahah!! I don't think he would have been placed in special ed, not for academics, anyway. I don't even think for social skills. From what I've read, his social skills weren't lacking enough to prevent him from having a "normal" life. But what do I know? I'm just another idiot produced from the "tracking years" of the educational system.

I, too, am a product of the 'tracking' years - and my father had to come to school and threaten the system because it was considered a 'waste of time' to place a minority girl in a college prep course. Evaluating individual students according to their abilities and production rather than 'some other criteria' is an improvement over 'tracking' of our era. Our opinions are based on our experience - but I don't think our 'goals' are that far apart as to what is needed today. Einstein would be considered 'dyslexic' today. . .but his mind was absolutely superior far and beyond that of the 'average' child. He couldn't read like the average child - but we have learned that 'slow' progress in one academic area does not mean a child is 'retarded' or 'slow'. Keeping a child in a 'slow' reading group may have limited his/her exposure to advanced concepts in math/science. The human mind is very complex - and teachers are professionals - not 'trainers'. Teachers should be educated and allowed to utilize their professional skill to motivate and improve the learning experience. We wouldn't want a doctor to perform surgery on our body if he hadn't received an outstanding professional education. I'm not 'excusing' teachers. I'm just trying to say that we don't realize the responsibility that they have in working with the human mind in the learning experience. A professional teacher is a gift. Those who consider themselves 'trainers' or 'baby sitters' should not be in the profession.

I don't think Einstein was dyslexic. Wasn't he readying physics books at an early age? Didn't he get into college at age 16? Clearly, he was reading beyond the level of his peers. I believe, however, that I have heard/read something about him not speaking until late in the game. I will refer you to Dibs in Search of Self. It is about a kid with a genius IQ (186). Sometimes they (really high IQ kids) just don't talk.

Keeping a child in a slow reading group does not limit the childs exposure to advance concepts in math, it just gives the child what he needs to become a better reader (or to read at his fullest potential) IN HIS READING CLASS. The kid could be great in math and be in an advanced math class. Who knows? But the kid will not do well in classes that require a lot of reading unless given the support that he needs in reading (thus, keeping him in the slow group until he is ready to move up). The slow group is challenging for those that are in it.

I'm sorry you were tracked unfairly. That is not the tracking I write of. The tracking I write of is, for example, if you are a poor reader then let's avoid putting you in the history class that is predominantly reading on your own at night and discussing said material the next day. Let's put you in the class that discusses first and then you read afterward. Do you understand what I am referring to? If you think I am referring to tracking based on skin color, or sex, then you are mistaken. That is not the tracking that I experienced nor is it the tracking to which I refer.

If you are saying that since there might be an Einstein among non-achievers, we should let them go on anyway, then you are wrong.

People like Einstein mainly was self-taught and didn't hold up any other students.

It is a waste of money and time to send a two year old piano player to MIT who can play Beethoven! He needs a vocational music school.

[quote]If you are saying that since there might be an Einstein among non-achievers, we should let them go on anyway, then you are wrong.[/quote]

I'm not saying that.

[quote]That is not the tracking that I experienced nor is it the tracking to which I refer.[/quote]

Then we are on the same 'track'. I wasn't tracked unfairly because my parents would not allow it. . .but it is good that we understand that people develop opinions based on experience. Professional teachers, under the guidance of good school districts/boards - are allowed to develop programs that meet the needs of their students. In most districts in the US today - this is not happening, but there is a 'one size fits all' mentality. Our educational system must be reformed - and we cannot afford to not invest in the education of our future. Without an educated populace, the future of the US is bleak. I don't have all the answers - but there are those who have studied the current needs of students and if left to put these studies into practice (without political interference) we can regain the standing that you and I were fortunate to experience. You must admit that what ;young people are exposed to today in no way resembles what we were exposed to in the '50's or '60's.

Einstein/dyslexia: This may help in understanding why current researchers describe Einstein as 'dyslexic'


Sorry, but a teacher is no more of a gift than a Nurse, Doctor, Surveyor, Parents, etc.
It is just a job. We have hundreds of thousands of them. The managers are at blame if they don't fire the simple ones!

Just as Atlanta's Super should be fired immediately for not firing many.
Also, if she controlled or knew about or forced the cheating, serve a year or two and fined heavily. They deserve no worship or overdone respect.

PTC Observer's picture

"There are many parents and citizens in this county who are involved. They are not going to wait around until the FC schools deteriorate."

That's what they said of DeKalb schools, now look at them. At one time they were the best in the State and many parts of the country. So, what happened?

I am afraid you're a little late on the deterioration deal DM.

Compare results by high schools in the county. National average 1,509.

Fayette County High School 1,452
Whitewater High School 1,501
Sandy Creek High School 1,502
Mcintosh High School 1,632
Starrs Mill High School 1,632

See any overall trends in these data DM? Are you proud to be just average or below average?

Look for Mcintosh scores to go down over the next three years, followed by Starrs Mill.

Don't think that what has happend in other school systems can't happen here, it can and it will.

If 2400 is an "A" then 15-1600 is an "F" (60)

Logic says that since there are many students who perform in the 2200-2400 range, that the "average" for a school should be 18-1900 a "C" or average.

Thius can only occur if the sort is done to vocational school in eighth grade, and incompetent systems are also sorted.


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