The Southern Education Foundation, along with seven other organizations including the SPLC Action Fund and the NAACP Florida Conference, signed on to a letter to the Florida Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Education listing concerns with SB48, a proposed expansion of the state’s existing school voucher programs. The letter lists the following as reasons for opposing SB48:
- SB48 would merge Florida’s five existing voucher programs into two, vastly expanding allowable uses of these funds and paving the way for an industry of unaccountable private education providers.
- SB48 is costly and funds a program model with no proven academic benefits for participating students.
- SB48 reduces accountability for Florida’s existing voucher programs by reducing the frequency of audits.
- SB48 would strip students with disabilities of their federal rights and does not contain a mechanism that would inform parents that their child is losing his or her rights.
- SB48 does not provide for transportation, free or reduced lunch, and basic protections against discrimination for students enrolled in private schools.
The letter urges lawmakers in Florida to focus resources on funding proven models such as community schools, which would provide integrated student supports and wraparound services for students.
Read the full letter below.Florida SenSubcomEdApprops SB 48 LTR FINAL