This week (Jan. 24-30, 2016) marks another National School Choice Week (NSCW). NSCW is an excuse for organizations to promote private school vouchers under the guise of “school choice.” Americans United, however, knows that private school vouchers do not represent true choice because students and parents with vouchers do not make the ultimate decision on which school to attend. Instead, private schools are free to exclude incoming students for many reasons. But there are many other reasons to oppose vouchers, including that private school vouchers threaten church state separation by funneling taxpayer dollars away from public schools and toward private religious schools.
2015 was a big year for vouchers
Currently, 27 states have voucher programs that are either traditional vouchers, tuition tax credits, or education savings accounts (ESAs):
State-Level litigation on voucher programs is a mixed bag:
- In North Carolina, the state Supreme Court upheld the state’s voucher program
- In Colorado, the state Supreme Court struck down a voucher program in Douglas County, CO as unconstitutional for funding religious schools
- In Nevada, we are currently challenging this education savings account program
For more information on why we oppose vouchers, see our online resources:
- Votes on State Voucher and Tuition Tax Credit Referenda
- Letter opposing the DC voucher program
- Myths vs. Facts about the DC voucher program
- Talking points opposing tuition tax credits
- Find memes, original blog posts, and links to articles on our VoucherFAIL tumblr page
- Also, check out our recent blog post on voucher programs and their lack of civil rights safegaurds.