Texas Legislature Says “No” To Vouchers

As detailed in this article from the Houston Chronicle, earlier this week members of the Texas House of Representatives slammed the door on an effort to create vouchers for private schools.

“Lawmakers in the midst of what promises to be an hours-long slog debating the state’s spending plan for the next biennium voted 103-44 in favor of an amendment expressly stating state money “may not be used to pay for or support a school voucher, education savings account, or tax credit scholarship program or a similar program through which a child may use state money for nonpublic education.” 

Rep. Abel Herrero, a Robstown Democrat who sponsored the amendment, said the vote shows the House is steadfast against a voucher program, whether it applies to all students or a smaller swath of kids. 
“The vote today sends a resounding message that schemes like vouchers, tax credits, savings programs, call it what you may, at the end of the day, it’s a method in which it seeks to siphon away moneys from our public schools,” said Herrero. “The House,with the vote today, strongly took a position in support of our public schools, our public school teachers.” 
While in Texas last week I listened to a panel of three state representatives, all on the education committee, discuss vouchers.  Two were Republicans, one was a Democrat.  Committee chairman,  Republican Dan Huberty, did not mince any words when he told us that voucher legislation was “dead on arrival” when it got to the House.
The voucher effort has gotten strong support from both Governor Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick.
It’s comforting to see common sense prevail in such cases.  And the Texas vote is also reason to not give up the battle for what is in the best interests of Alabama public schools and their 730,000 students.

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