by Dr. Terry Stoops
Director of the Center for Effective Education, John Locke Foundation
Governor Cooper released a compromise budget yesterday that included the discontinuation of funding for North Carolina’s school choice programs. The press release outlines a plan that would “Maintain private school vouchers in the base budget for those who now use them, but do not include additional money or special provisions that expand and promote additional private school vouchers. The Governor’s budget eliminated private school vouchers.”
His proposed phase-out of North Carolina’s Opportunity Scholarship Program (and possibly the special needs voucher and ESA programs) is little more than pandering to the teacher union that supports his administration, the N.C. Association of Educators. The annual $10 million funding increases for the Opportunity Scholarship Program are a minuscule part of North Carolina’s $24 billion budget.
The low-income and special needs families that rely on private school scholarships, as well as families who need them, should be mad as hell.