Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Come on, it's not the Spanish Inquisition

The Catholic dioxese in Hong Kong has won a legal battle which will enable it to challenge the constitutionality of the government's education reforms in court. The Chirch objects to a government policy requiring aided schools to set up management committees, 40% of whose members will be drawn from parents, alumni, teachers and government representatives. The Church argues that this contravenes its right under the Basic Law to control its own schools.

Fair enough, but the key word here is "aided" - meaning subsidised by the taxpayer. There is a very simple solution to this problem - if the Catholic Church wants 100% control, then it should also provide 100% of the schools' financing. If public money is involved, it is not unreasonable to require some degree of public accountability over its spending.
Otherwise the Church is trying to "render unto God that which belongs to Caesar", and should be firmly rebuffed.

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