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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

School voucher program poised to expand



A school voucher program created by former Gov. Jeb Bush is set to grow under a bill making its way through the state Legislature.

Thousands of previously ineligible students would be able to move from struggling public schools to higher-performing ones in any school district — even if they don’t live there — as long as the district has available space. The students would be allowed to stay in their adopted districts until they graduate.

And if a student in any grade is assigned to a school with a troubled record, he or she could choose a different school to attend — an option only available now to students entering kindergarten or first grade.

The measure would not give students public dollars to attend private or parochial schools. The Florida Supreme Court struck down as unconstitutional that portion of Bush’s original and controversial voucher plan in 2006.

But the bill, which moved through committees in both legislative chambers this week along party-line votes, would expand the public-school provisions of the Opportunity Scholarship Program. Full story here.

[Last modified: Wednesday, March 23, 2011 8:45pm]


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