Facts: Mississippi ESA Voucher Program

FACT: Since the special education voucher program began, the Legislature has underfunded special education in public schools by $101.7-million. (Sources: Mississippi Department of Education, The Parents’ Campaign Research and Education Fund)

FACT: Special education in public schools is underfunded almost $30-million this school year alone.

FACT: 67% of the voucher schools responding to the PEER investigation admitted that public schools are providing special education services to the voucher students enrolled in their private schools. (Source: Mississippi PEER report)

FACT: Parents reported that they couldn’t use the vouchers because:
• Children are denied admission to private schools
• Not able to find private school that met child’s needs
• Not able to afford tuition/fee balance
(Source: Peer report)

FACT: Among voucher abuses cited by the Mississippi PEER report:
• $11,000 to a parent for “teaching” with no evidence that the child was enrolled in an eligible school
• $6,286 for “tutoring” without the required certification documentation
• $390 to a preschool for “Mother’s Day Out”

FACT: Of 96 private schools in Mississippi and Tennessee that received tax dollars via vouchers, only five were designed to serve special needs populations. (Source: PEER report)

For more, see PEER Review of Vouchers: Fraud, Lack of Accountabilty, Unspent Funds

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