These Bills Affect Your Schools!

Please keep calling about the voucher bill. Your calls are making a difference!

SB 2594 narrows the ESA voucher program by requiring that private voucher schools provide the special education services called for in a voucher student’s IEP. That’s good. But there’s a giant loophole that lets voucher schools circumvent this key requirement: allowing online schools. The online school loophole needs to be removed.

The Senate Education Committee is meeting tomorrow at 9:00 a.m., so please call today.

Please ask members of the Senate Education Committee to remove the provision allowing online schools to participate as eligible schools.

Find contact information for Senate Education Committee Members

Other important legislation is working its way through the process. Committees in the House and Senate have passed bills that address the teacher shortage by giving candidates for teacher education programs more than one way to meet entry requirements, Senate committees have passed legislation to expand and increase funding for early childhood education, and a teacher pay raise bill has passed the full Senate. Follow developments on those bills here.

But the bill that we need your help with is that voucher bill. If private schools are going to take state tax dollars to educate children with special needs, they need to provide the special education services to meet those needs. The way the ESA program works currently, private voucher schools are being paid for special education services they often don’t provide (they get 70% more per student in voucher dollars than public schools receive in state MAEP funds for a typical student). Please make those calls today. Ask your friends and family to call, too.

And we hope you are enjoying our new web site! We hope you will find it a helpful means of staying in the loop about issues related to public school policy and legislation. Use it to find your legislators’ education voting records, updates on legislation that affects your public schools, and information specific to your school district, such as school funding, accountability ratings, and contact information for the legislators who represent your district. Share the link and invite others to join our fight for strong public schools. Because together, we’ve got this!

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