Thursday, June 30, 2005

Voucher program to expand?

Senate Republicans are considering raising the $7,500 per child annual limit for the scholarships offered by the federally funded DC voucher program. Apparently there are at least 40 or DC students who have been qualified for the scholarships but cannot find placement in schools due to the lack openings at the high school level. By raising the per-student limit the thought is more of these students could find placement. Sally Sachar, president and chief executive of the fund, says this change will not require any additional funding; the $5 million surplus from the first year will cover the raise. The Mayor and some members of congress aren't so keen to make any changes to the program. According to his spokesman Mayor Williams "doesn't like it, but he's not yet opposed to it. . . . He's looking at all options that will ensure that kids who want to pursue their education have the opportunity and are not frozen out." And Senators Landrieu and Feinstein want to see the program complete its five year trial before tinkering with it.

UPDATE: BoE President Cooper-Cafritz isn't too happy either.


kate said...

do they really think that taking more money from dcps will make the public schools any better?

maybe they should put that money into building improvements, or improving the bureaucracy. but that might be like feeding a starving person food, it may kill them.

Nathan said...

Actually, contrary to popular belief DCPS didn't lose a penny to the voucher program; the funds were from the Federal gov't. In fact, DCPS was fed an additional $13 million in the same bill that authorized the vouchers.

Additionally, according to Sally Sacher the raising of the ceiling will not require any further funding as the surplus from the first year of the voucher program will be used.

EdWonk said...
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EdWonk said...

This post is featured as an "editor's choice" at the 22nd edition of The Carnival Of Education.