To the Editor:
As director of the statewide advocacy group for private schooling in Texas, I was dismayed by the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools’ (TAPPS) refusal to accommodate Jewish day school Robert M. Beren Academy’s Sabbath observance by amending the state basketball tournament schedule. Though pleased with TAPPS’ eventual reversal, I was further disappointed with the statement by TAPPS Executive Director Edd Burleson that he did so only in response to legal pressure.
Now Mr. Burleson claims that had TAPPS fought a pending court order postponing the tournament, it would have won. Even worse, he says that TAPPS should not have admitted Beren Academy in the first place.
Texas is home to one of the most ethnically and religiously diverse populations in the country, and we are proud to have hundreds of private schools that serve our citizens with high quality, mission-based educational options. As the largest private school athletic league in the state, TAPPS has the distinct responsibility to manage its affairs with the interests of all its member schools in mind. Inconvenience is no excuse for discrimination.
We continue to hope that the TAPPS board of directors will use this opportunity to align its policies with the desire of many of its member schools to provide a fair competitive environment for Texas students.
Charles T. Evans
Texas Association of Non-Public Schools