school vouchers

Ryan Poppe

When state lawmakers meet in January they will once again square off over using public school dollars to pay for attending private schools.   Opponents of that practice call it a voucher program.  Supporters tend to call it school choice.  And the debate during this next session will include special needs children.

Ryan Poppe


A school choice program under judicial review in Nevada is also one being considered by Texas lawmakers.  Education leaders are learning about education savings accounts and how they would benefit the state.




According to Nevada State Sen. Scott Hammond, the author of his state’s 2015 “school choice” law, education savings accounts allow parents to save for the cost of their child’s education.  The state transfers 90-percent of the funds the child’s school district would’ve received from the state into that parent’s education savings account. 

Ryan Poppe

A group of education non-profits, religious leaders, and state lawmakers take aim at an effort in the Texas Legislature to rebrand the term school voucher with terms like, “Public Education Savings Accounts.”  But the school choice advocates say they’re only trying to bring more educational opportunities to more Texas children.

For state Sen. Jose Menendez, a Democrat from San Antonio, a school voucher by any other name is still a voucher.  Menendez is part of a group formed ahead of the 2017 legislation session called the Texas Coalition of Public Schools. 

Ryan E. Poppe

A bill that would allow businesses to fund students’ education at a private school passes out of the Texas Senate. Although the bill’s author says his legislation creates a scholarship program, others in the senate call it a public school voucher bill.

Senate Education Chairman Larry Taylor is a Republican from Friendswood and has authored a bill that would provide state tax benefits to companies that set up scholarship funds so that students attending public school could attend a nearby private school.

Phil Gramm

Senate education leaders heard both sides of an argument to bring a private school voucher-system to the state on Thursday. Some of that testimony included hearing former U.S. Sen. Phil Gramm, who spoke out very strongly in favor of the bill.

Gramm has been a longtime advocate for private school vouchers. He was invited to speak in front of the Senate’s Education Committee on New Braunfels Republican Sen. Donna Campbell’s bill.