Lines have been drawn and sides chosen in the war over Education Savings Accounts, or vouchers. Pro-ESA groups are banning non-ESA proponents from their Facebook groups while other stakeholders are making public plays to sway the public. Learn more about what’s happening below:
Vouchers would potentially take your tax dollars from Moore Schools (public education) and create two school systems funded with public money: one public and one private.
ESA Proponent lambasts Moore superintendent for using school website to advocate against ESAs/vouchers
For the record, both the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards and National Council of Teachers of English (both of which are professional organizations which support Oklahoma teachers) list advocacy among their standards of professional educators.
Dr. Robert Romines, Superintendent of Moore Public Schools, issued a call to action Feb. 11 across the district asking recipients for data to back up his future statement on Education Savings Accounts.
The Tulsa World calls school vouchers a bad idea
Proponents have slyly named these attempts to undercut public schools “Education Savings Accounts.” Nothing is being saved. They’re spending accounts, and it’s spending on private schools, and further undercutting public education in the process.
Public school administrative organizations ask educators to contact legislators
Under HB2949, qualifying students will be eligible to receive a voucher for 30%-90% of their state aid funding, which they would then be able to use to pay for private, virtual, or post-secondary tuition and other educational costs such as tutoring, curriculum, and field trips. Over the first 14 years, this would divert money as much as $2 billion away from the public schools that serve more than 90% of Oklahoma’s students. The annual cost could reach $250 million.
Retired educator issues rallying call to battle zombie voucher legislation
And here we are again, facing a bill with a different number and the same intent…Monday in Committee. Rep. Nelson has the backing of the Governor who announced in her State of the State address that she is 100% in support of ESA/vouchers and wants a bill on her desk to sign.
Impact Tulsa CEO states vouchers send wrong message about value of public education
Oklahoma Education Coalition pushes lawmakers to support all students in public schools
Oklahoma lawmakers are poised to approve vouchers, also known as Education Savings Accounts, this legislative session. This is NOT OK. Vouchers aren’t a solution for helping build a solid education foundation for Oklahoma’s children. Oklahoma’s policymakers must work with parents and education leaders at all levels for real solutions to support the 692,000 students in their public schools. There are no shortcuts. Lawmakers must say NO to vouchers!
Rob Miller notes vouchers do not help the needy
Suffice it to say, the out-of-state voucher wolves are not counting on anything at this point and are pulling out every stop to promote this legislation in Oklahoma and at least a half-dozen other states across America this spring…
The bottom line is our state has absolutely no business discussing methods for draining even more public education funding out of an already dwindling state budget. Our legislators need to remember they work for the people of Oklahoma and not the national reform crowd who fund their reelection campaigns. They need to stop playing games with the children of Oklahoma, especially our most needy!
Miller notes that our legislators are sweet on ESAs
This much is certain. A significant number of lawmakers in Oklahoma, including Governor Mary Fallin, are sweet on the idea of ESAs in our state.