Santorum Took State Cash for Kids' Schooling
...despite fact that he wants government out of education
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Mar 2, 2012 8:43 AM CST
Republican presidential candidate former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.   (AP Photo/John Amis)

(Newser) – Rick Santorum has been telling America it's time to take federal and state government "out of the education business," leaving schools in local hands. Indeed, he proudly home-schools his own children—but it seems he's not above using state money to do so, the AP reports. When Santorum was a Pennsylvania senator, he reportedly got a Pittsburgh-area school district's help paying his kids' online schooling bill, which ran to the tens of thousands of dollars.

The issue caused controversy in 2004 because Santorum's family, though they owned a house in the Pittsburgh area, was mainly living in Virginia, near DC. The Penn Hills School District sought to recoup $73,000 it said shouldn't have been sent to an Internet charter school. (Pennsylvania law requires school districts to pay for resident students who enroll in cyberschools.) In the end, the Pennsylvania Education Department settled the matter by paying the district $55,000. Following the uproar, a factor in Santorum's 2006 election loss, the Santorums dropped their kids' Internet education and went back to home-schooling.