Tennessee education savings account plan clears first hurdle

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Gov. Bill Lee’s school voucher proposal has cleared its first hurdle inside Tennessee’s GOP-dominant statehouse but not without facing a wide range of questions from lawmakers uneasy about the broad scope of the bill.

A House subcommittee agreed on Tuesday to send the bill to the chamber’s full education panel for review.

According to the proposal provided Thursday, parents of students in certain low-performing school districts could receive $7,300 from a government-authorized account to pay for approved expenses.

However, the proposal has raised eyebrows because students from a high-performing school inside an overall low-quality district could also qualify for an education savings account. Furthermore, students in the program wouldn’t be subjected to the same amount of testing.

Lee says students enrolled at high-quality schools likely won’t leave.

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