School Choice | New Hampshire Public Radio

School Choice

N.H. State House dome.
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

New Hampshire lawmakers are considering a program to expand school choice for thousands of K-12 students. It’s called an Education Savings Account, and it would give taxpayer dollars to families to pay for tuition at private and parochial schools, or other options.

If passed, it would be one of the most sweeping programs of its kind in the country. Here’s what you need to know about it.

Dan Tuohy for NHPR

A bill to expand school choice in New Hampshire is moving forward in the New Hampshire State Senate.

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: February 5, 2021

Feb 4, 2021

Gov. Chris Sununu is vowing to jettison a problematic sign-up website for scheduling for second dose COVID-19 vaccination appointments. The state reports that 110,000 N.H. residents have gotten the first vaccine shot, but many are struggling with a federal website to register for the second vaccination. Sununu says the state is working to create their own registration system. House Bill 20 aims to set-up a school choice program that some are calling the most sweeping such legislation in the country. We talk to the newest member of the State Board of Education. The state of Nevada takes steps to challenge New Hampshire’s first in the nation primary status. And we consider whether we should root for or against Tom Brady in the Superbowl. 

State lawmakers heard hours of testimony Tuesday on a bill that would significantly expand access and funding for school choice in New Hampshire.

Photo Credit woodleywonderworks via Flickr Creative Commons

A bill to significantly expand access to school vouchers in New Hampshire is gathering momentum in the Republican-controlled State House.

HB 20 would establish an “education freedom account program,” allowing families whose children have left their local public school to redirect state aid to the educational program of that family’s choice.

Michael Brindley / NHPR

A family in Croydon is suing the New Hampshire Department of Education, alleging that restricting the use of public tuition funds for non-religious schools violates their constitutional rights.

N.H. State House
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

For the third time this year, the New Hampshire House of Representatives has voted against a bill to create education savings accounts. 

The bill that would have allowed for state tax dollars to be spent on private school tuition and homeschooling expenses had already been shot down by the House on two separate occasions. 

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: May 4, 2018

May 4, 2018

Statehouse lawmakers make decisions on a number of contentious issues, including Medicaid Expansion, education freedom accounts, voting eligibility, transgender rights, and marriage age.  The House-passed version of an animal cruelty bill conflicts with the Senate version - compromise is necessary, but is it likely?  And two more candidates enter the crowded race for Congress in the first congressional district.

A bill that would have created a school choice program in New Hampshire based on education savings accounts was voted down in the House of Representatives on Wednesday.

The vote on SB 193 capped off a long and winding journey for a controversial piece of legislation that was originally introduced in January of 2017.

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: April 27, 2018

Apr 27, 2018

The New Hampshire legislature approves a bill to repeal the state’s death penalty, sending the measure to the governor despite his vow to veto it.  A bill re-defining “domicile” for voting purposes is headed for an up or down vote in the Senate.  Debates on Family Medical Leave and school choice may be over...for now.  And four state employees unions may finally have a contract. 

All these stories and more on the Weekly NH News Roundup.

N.H. State House
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

A bill that would expand the state’s only school choice program is one step closer to becoming law.

Under the existing education tax credit program, businesses in New Hampshire can get a tax break when they donate to scholarships.

Families who qualify for those scholarships can use them for things like private school tuition, college courses, and homeschooling expenses.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

A controversial school choice bill was dealt a significant setback by lawmakers in the House Finance Committee on Wednesday.

Under Senate Bill 193, some parents could use state tax dollars to educate their children outside of public school using what are known as education savings accounts. 

N.H. State House
Allegra Boverman for NHPR

Lawmakers are continuing in their attempt to hammer out the details of a controversial school choice bill that was first introduced over 14 months ago.

Senate Bill 193 received yet another set of tweaks on Wednesday. 

Flikr Creative Commons/ evmaiden

For over a year now, education policy watchers in Concord have focused their attention on a controversial bill that would create Education Savings Accounts.

But meanwhile, another bill popular with the school choice proponents has been making its way through the legislature, largely unnoticed.

One education bill, HB 1263, would increase accountability and oversight for home-schooling, an idea debated in other states this year, and sparking huge opposition at a recent hearing in New Hampshire.  The other bill, SB 193, concerns school choice, and whether families can access taxes raised for public education to finance an alternative. 

Jason Moon for NHPR

A controversial school choice bill drew a large crowd at a public hearing before lawmakers Tuesday.

The bill would allow some parents to take their children out of public school and then spend the state tax dollars that would have followed that child on other forms of education, including private school tuition.  

Manchester Mayor Joyce Craig was among those who spoke against the measure.

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Jan 4, 2018

The term "bombogenesis" becomes familiar to N.H. residents as they dig out from the first major nor'easter of 2018.  The N.H. Senate approves a bill that would tighten voter eligibility requirements, and the House takes on state-funded scholarships for private school education.


Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The New Hampshire House of Representatives has approved a controversial school choice bill by a vote of 184-162.

Photo Credit woodleywonderworks via Flickr Creative Commons

In an email sent to legislative leaders last week, the New Hampshire Attorney General’s office wrote that Senate Bill 193 is constitutional.

That opinion comes days before the bill is to be voted on by the House of Representatives.

Jason Moon for NHPR

A controversial school choice bill cleared a major hurdle in the State House Tuesday, receiving a positive recommendation from the House Education Committee on Tuesday by a 10-9 vote.

The bill would allow parents of some children to spend tax dollars to educate their children with non-public school options like private school or home school. But the bill looks considerably different than when it was originally introduced several months ago.

evmaiden via Flickr Creative Commons

A bill that would allow New Hampshire parents to use state funding to send their children to private schools faces a key vote Tuesday.

The House Education Committee will vote on the controversial bill that’s been the subject of debate among lawmakers and school reform advocates.

Jason Moon for NHPR

A key legislative vote on a controversial school choice bill was postponed today.

For weeks, Republican lawmakers have been working to revamp a sweeping school choice bill that was first proposed last year in the State House.

The bill would allow some families to take their children out of public school and then spend tax dollars that would have gone to that public school on other educational purposes.

Jason Moon for NHPR

A controversial school choice bill faces an important vote before lawmakers tomorrow.

The bill would create a type of school voucher system in the state, where parents could take their children out of their local public school and then spend the tax dollars that would have gone to that public school on other educational purposes, like private school tuition or home school supplies.

The proposal was hotly debated last legislative session and ultimately tabled by lawmakers.

Pixabay

A revised school voucher bill would allow parents to use tax dollars allocated to public schools to send their children to other schools, or homeschool them. Advocates say this gives children a better chance to find a school that suits their needs, while opponents worry too much money will be withdrawn from public school education, and put a strain on districts. 


Allegra Boverman for NHPR

When Republicans took full control in Concord this year, they wasted no time outlining an ambitious policy agenda on a number of fronts, including education.

While Republicans were able to accomplish much of that agenda, they weren’t able to get everything they wanted. Here’s a rundown of some major developments in education policy so far this year.

Photo Credit woodleywonderworks via Flickr Creative Commons

Lawmakers will debate a controversial education bill Tuesday that would allow parents to use state tax dollars to pay for private school tuition and homeschool expenses.

The bill is testing how far and how fast school choice advocates are willing to go in implementing their agenda.

Peter Biello

  Now two months into the job, New Hampshire Education Commissioner Frank Edelblut says he's been impressed by what he's seen far in his visits to schools across the state.

But as the state considers legislation that would vastly expand school choice options for parents, Edelblut says the goal for public schools is clear.

Flickr

A Senate bill proposes allowing parents to use public education funds for alternative educational expenses, from private school tuition to computer equipment. A growing number of states have adopted such measures but not without plenty of debate.  We'll take a look at that discussion here, and around the country. 


Brett Levin / Flickr

  Opponents of a school voucher bill say the proposal would violate the state constitution by allowing public money to be used at private, religious schools.

The Republican-backed bill would create Education Freedom Savings Accounts, allowing parents to use public money for a broad range of education expenses, including tuition at private schools. Families would get roughly $3,400 dollars per child, or 90 percent of the average per-pupil state adequacy grant.

Tom Woodward / Flickr Creative Commons

  A school choice bill making its way through the legislature could have major implications for the way public education is funded in New Hampshire.

The Republican-backed proposal would create what the bill calls “Education Freedom Savings Accounts.”

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