School voucher bill fails in Georgia House
ATLANTA - Some lawmakers erupted in cheers Wednesday night as the vote totals flashed on the board inside the Georgia House of Representatives signaling the failure of a bill to create school vouchers.
WHAT BILLS PASSED AND DID NOT ADVANCE DURING THE 2023 GEORGIA LEGISLATIVE SESSION
"The Georgia Promise Scholarship Act" would have given students $6,500 per year to use for private or homeschool expenses. In order to qualify, a child must have attended a public school ranked in the bottom 25% in the state.
"At the end of the day, we have an obligation to give to every child in this state," said state Rep. Todd Jones, R-South Forsyth. "They should have the option of public school, of private school, of hybrid and also of homeschooling."
Opponents, however, argued that vouchers would take money away from schools that need it most.
"I am very concerned that we're opening a Pandora's Box where these vouchers will lead to a significant threat to our public schools," said state Rep. Becky Evans, D-Atlanta.
Some also pointed out that very few Georgia students would be able to take advantage of the program because of the high cost and limited availability of private options.
The bill failed by a vote of 89 to 85. Immediately after the vote, members of the House passed a motion to reconsider the measure at another time.