KGOU

School Vouchers

State-Funded Private School Vouchers Expand to Foster Children

Jul 21, 2017
lockers
Jacob McCleland / KGOU

Foster children will soon be able to receive state funds to attend private school.

The change represents the first time that a state school voucher program, the Lindsey Nicole Henry Scholarship Program, has been expanded beyond students who are disabled or have special-needs. It could foreshadow future efforts to open the program up to more children.

classroom floor
Jacob McCleland / KGOU

A series of school voucher bills are dead for the session, according to House and Senate leadership.

Senate President Pro Tem Brian Bingman, R-Sapulpa, says lawmakers won’t consider the Education Savings Account bills. They were pending in both the House and Senate Thursday, which was a key legislative deadline for bills to be heard on the floor of their chamber of origin.

Jacob McCleland / KGOU

Oklahoma's House Common Education Committee narrowly approved a Republican-backed voucher program on Monday. The Education Savings Account program allows public money to be spent on students who attend private schools.

State Rep. Jason Nelson, R-Oklahoma City, said during committee debate the bill creates school choice options that some families desperately need.

Ryan LaCroix / Oklahoma Public Media Exchange

A push to amend the state Constitution to keep a Ten Commandments monument at the State Capitol could also boost efforts to expand school choice vouchers and education savings accounts in Oklahoma.

State Sen. Clark Jolley (R-Edmond), the chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee.
Oklahoma Senate

Legislation that would allow parents to receive state subsidies to send their children to private schools has been withdrawn by its Senate author.

Republican Sen. Clark Jolley of Edmond said Wednesday he's pulling the school choice plan from consideration in the Senate to address questions about how it would work. Jolley says he plans to pursue the legislation next year.

a school classroom with empty chairs
comedy_nose / Flickr Creative Commons

A bill allowing parents to receive cash subsidies from the state to send their children to private schools has cleared a Senate committee despite bipartisan opposition.

The Senate Finance Committee voted 8-6 on Tuesday for the bill that is fiercely opposed by education groups, including those representing school boards, administrators and teachers.