BOAST schools forum in Annapolis Oct. 6

Hundreds of parents, teachers, enrichment program leaders and business supporters are expected in Annapolis Oct. 6 for a forum designed to raise awareness about the BOAST Maryland Tax Credit.

BOAST (Building Opportunities for All Students and Teachers in Maryland) is a proposed state tax credit that would provide a 75 percent state income tax credit to businesses that provide scholarships to nonpublic school students or provide continuing education grants to public or nonpublic school teachers.

The credit would also apply to businesses that donate to enrichment programs for public school students.

The BOAST forum will educate, connect and train Catholic and other nonpublic school and enrichment program supporters in becoming effective advocates for the BOAST tax credit, which will be considered by the Maryland General Assembly in its 2010 session.

The event will begin at 9 a.m. in the Miller Senate Office Building with an informational session on the benefits of BOAST and how the tax credit works. That will be followed by small group training and brainstorming on advocacy efforts, followed by a complimentary lunch and networking.

The BOAST Maryland Coalition, which is dedicated to ensuring high-quality, diverse and affordable educational opportunities, hosted a rally in March that drew about 500 students to Annapolis.

The Oct. 6 forum is the coalition’s first event specifically for parents, teachers and other adult supporters of BOAST. The forum is free and registration is required online by Sept. 29.

According to the Maryland Catholic Conference, there are about 131,000 students in Catholic and other nonpublic schools throughout the state, providing a savings to taxpayers of about $1.5 billion annually.

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Catholic Review

The Catholic Review is the official publication of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.