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Jackson School Board Passes Resolution Against Vouchers

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Jackson School Board Passes Resolution Against Vouchers

The Jackson County Board of Education approved a resolution during its Monday meeting opposing Governor Bill Lee’s proposed Education Freedom Scholarship Act.

The so-called Vouchers Bill would provide public tax money for up to 20,000 children statewide to pursue private schooling. Chairman Mark Brown said the act would have a negative effect on everyone in the county regardless of if they are involved in the school system in any way. Brown said the proposal would force an increase in property taxes to make up for the lost school funding.

“The funding has to be funded to these counties and the schools because they’re mandated and you’ve got to do it,” Brown said. “And, you know, they ain’t going to mandate these home schools and all them, so it just, it’s a catch twenty or it ain’t right. I mean, you can’t take all the funding away. Then you’re going to put all the burden on the taxpayer.”

Director of Schools Jason Hardy said the resolution came from the Tennessee School Boards Association (TSBA). Hardy said the TSBA is encouraging school boards across the state to sign the resolution. Brown said the TSBA is organizing the resolution as a way to voice their concern before the proposal becomes an official bill.

“They want to get ahead of it and try to let them show that, ‘hey, you know, we don’t, the counties can’t support this,” Brown said.

Hardy said the Tennessee Organization of School Superintendents has spoken out against the proposal as well.

“The simple fact of why we’re opposing it as a public school is because we think that public funds should stay with public schools,” Hardy said. “And then if something does change that needs to lead to having a plan where we’re on the same playing field, and right now that’s not the case.”


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