(AP) Education groups are offering mixed responses to Gov. Bill Lee’s proposal to spend $25 million for a new education savings accounts program in Tennessee.
Tennessee Education Association President Beth Brown said Monday that the proposal sparked concerns because ESAs are “vouchers with less accountability.” Brown added that teachers currently struggle to pay for classroom supplies and the state should help public school classroom and not pay for a program that could harm student achievement.
Meanwhile, pro-voucher group Tennessee Federation for Children State Director Shaka Mitchell says Lee’s ESA program reaffirms the state’s commitment to school choice.
Lee’s plan would allow parents of students in certain low-income districts with three or more schools ranked in the bottom 10 percent to receive $7,300 from a government-authorized account to pay for approved expenses.