Governor Vetoes LaRock’s School Choice Voucher Bill

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) vetoed a bill today that would have provided public school students with a voucher to be spent on private school tuition.

The General Assembly had narrowly passed the bill, HB 1605 sponsored by Del. David LaRock (R-10), who represents western Loudoun. The legislation would have allowed parents of public preschool through high school students to apply for a “one-year, renewable Parental Choice Education Savings Account” in a similar amount to what the state would spend on the child in a public school setting.

For Loudoun families, that’s about $4,000 a year.

LaRock called the proposal a “win-win,” saying that it would improve educational access and opportunities for students and give parents more flexibility over their children’s education.

In an emailed statement today, he said, “I’m disappointed that Governor McAuliffe would turn his back to children whose educational needs are not being met in the public school setting. Constituents have told me how public schools are failing to meet the federally mandated requirements of their child’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP). Wealthy families already have school choice, but this bill would have expanded that freedom and opportunity to thousands of vulnerable kids.”

Loudoun County representatives Del. Thomas A. “Tag” Greason (R-32) and Sen. Richard H. Black (R-13) also sponsored the bill.

A similar bill sponsored by LaRock and aimed at providing the vouchers just for students with disabilities was approved by the full General Assembly last year, but McAuliffe also vetoed that measure.

7 thoughts on “Governor Vetoes LaRock’s School Choice Voucher Bill

  • 2017-03-26 at 8:02 pm

    I’m looking forward to Governor Gillespie actually taking care of the people of Virginia.

    I wish Democrats actually cared about children instead of teachers unions.

  • 2017-03-27 at 9:11 am

    Loudoun has good schools – this was just another piece of self-serving legislation for rhe home school crowd trying to undermine an excellent school system

    • 2017-03-27 at 3:26 pm

      Your comments make no sense. While I don’t necessarily support this bill, it would have limited effect within Loudoun. Fewer students would be enrolled and thus more $$ would be available for the students that remained. In certain parts of Virginia, this could lead to racial or economic segregation of the schools. Not in Loudoun.

      If LCPS is so “excellent”, why didn’t they release their student growth scores as required by law?

      • 2017-03-27 at 10:27 pm

        you have those number now, don’t you, SGP – why do you release them. LCPS doesn’t bother with them because they are useless for the purpose you intend. There is no reason to bring this up again, though, since the article is not about your theory about good and bad teachers, it is about school vouchers – but, to think that you could stick with the subject would make me as nutsy as you.

        • 2017-03-28 at 7:34 am

          Now here is a shocker. An LCPS teacher, CareerSwitcher, doesn’t think school vouchers has anything to do with the quality of teachers in the schools! I guess parents are choosing to move their kids to private schools because they have better mascots, eh Switcher?

          Of course parents are choosing private schools for better teachers. In public schools, one gets no say over which teacher is assigned. By definition, a parent gets choice in their child’s teachers by choosing which private school they attend. If public schools promoted and recruited the best teachers, far fewer would want to attend private schools in the first place.

          Maybe the fact that LCPS teachers like CareerSwitcher have no logical abilities to understand these policies is one reason many parents want a choice.

          • 2017-03-28 at 8:59 am

            I know you know how to read, SGP, so stop changing the subject. Where did I say anything close to the suggestion that vouchers have noting to do with the quality of schools. Once again, you show how despicable you are. My comments only mentioned your attempt to change the subject to SGP scores. Bit you know this and once again try to deflect any criticism instead of trying to get better. A despicable use of a public forum.

            But, I guess your action here is evidence that your theories of SGP scores being used to rate teachers is complete fiction.

          • 2017-03-29 at 2:35 pm

            VAMs/SGPs were designed to measure the quality of instruction in schools and by teachers. To claim that discussion of SGPs has nothing to do with the quality of the schools is specious.

            Btw, LCPS now calculates its own internal growth scores. Or maybe you, as a “professional”, aren’t familiar with what’s going on in your own district. LCPS could release its own internal data so the public could judge them. Something tells me that will never happen.

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