On a vote of 27-21, the North Carolina House Education Committee passed a voucher bill (called, euphemistically, “opportunity scholarships”).
As the article linked above notes, private school vouchers will siphon a minimum of $100 million from the public schools over the next three years.
In her summary, Lindsay Wagner of NC Policy Watch reports that one supporter of the bill likened school choice to buying a carton of milk.
Readers may recall that Jeb Bush used the same metaphor when he spoke at last year’s Republican national convention.
Rep. Bert Jones (R-Caswell, Rockingham) compared offering parents their “God-given right” to school choice to selecting which kind of milk they prefer.
“Just because you support HB 944 would not mean, as the opponents would make it seem, that you are against public education,” said Jones. “That basically means that … just because you purchase 2% milk means that something is wrong with whole milk, or 1%, or chocolate milk, or fat free milk, or all the milks out there now that aren’t even milk.”
The school voucher bill should now move on to the House Appropriations committee; however, the possibility remains that it could be inserted into the budget, without further debate.