Senate approves school voucher bill | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Senate approves school voucher bill

Posted By on Tue, Mar 21, 2017 at 3:06 PM

click to enlarge Jim Hendren: Joins school voucher effort.
  • Jim Hendren: Joins school voucher effort.
The Arkansas Senate today approved, 22-5, a school voucher bill, a pilot program that will provide payment to private schools for almost 700 students a year for four years.

The bill met fierce criticism from, among others, Sens. Linda Chesterfield and Joyce Elliott. Elliott decried the various attacks on public schools in a variety of legislation, whether from charter schools, vouchers or other issues. She said the governor had talked of a comprehensive study of approaches to education and she urged waiting for a comprehensive approach.

A significant new voice for the bill was the governor's nephew and floor leader, Sen. Jim Hendren. He said the bill had been approved by amendments in a way it wouldn't do damage to public education. He also said competition was good for anyone, including schools.

He also said the bill would limit loss of students to 1 percent of enrollment. He said that would be only 10 students in a 1000-student district. It would be more than 200 in Little Rock, however. Hendren said choice would be provided to those who can't afford it.;

He didn't address the lack of credentials for schools that receive the money and a lack of accountability and transparency.

The is called an education savings account bill. This is a misleading title that has led many in the public erroneously to believe beneficiaries are puttting money into the accounts. They are not. Tax credits are given to people who designate a contribution to nonprofit agencies that will distribute the money in support of students who apply for it. The pass-through sidesteps questions about spending public money on private schools.

Public school administrators have fought the bill — and their effort defeated it earlier in the House, where the bill now heads again.

Tags: , ,

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Comments (4)

Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-4 of 4

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Lies, sex and cell phones: The Arkansas roots of Hugh Freeze's demise

    I was going to leave the Hugh Freeze ouster at Ole Miss to the sportswriters but I thought it weird how the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette print account of his abrupt departure (from the AP) made no mention of Arkansas's own Houston Nutt, except as the coach Freeze succeeded.
    • Jul 21, 2017
  • Trump at work on obstructing justice; French Hill dodging questions

    Donald Trump is talking about pardons as the Russian investigation heats up. Closer to home, we get the cold shoulder from U.S. Rep. French Hill on his reported meeting with Russian dealmakers.
    • Jul 21, 2017
  • Suddenly, Obamacare doesn't look so bad

    The New York Times ventured into Trumpland in Pennsylvania to sample opinions on the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as Obamacare. People are singing a different tune.
    • Jul 21, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

Most Shared

  • So much for a school settlement in Pulaski County

    The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette's Cynthia Howell got the scoop on what appears to be coming upheaval in the Pulaski County School District along with the likely end of any chance of a speedy resolution of school desegregation issues in Pulaski County.
  • Riverfest calls it quits

    The board of directors of Riverfest, Arkansas's largest and longest running music festival, announced today that the festival will no longer be held. Riverfest celebrated its 40th anniversary in June. A press release blamed competition from other festivals and the rising cost of performers fees for the decision.
  • Football for UA Little Rock

    Andrew Rogerson, the new chancellor at UA Little Rock, has decided to study the cost of starting a major college football team on campus (plus a marching band). Technically, it would be a revival of football, dropped more than 60 years ago when the school was a junior college.
  • Turn to baseball

    When the world threatens to get you down, there is always baseball — an absorbing refuge, an alternate reality entirely unto itself.

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation