MEMPHIS, Tenn. — I’ve said this before, but it bears repeating - Tennessee Governor Bill Lee should end his half-baked effort to use public money to send public school children to private schools.
The state court of appeals Tuesday upheld a lower court decision that the governor’s Education Savings Account program is unconstitutional. The appeals court agreed that the state law creating private school vouchers illegally took the power away from Shelby and Davidson County elected officials to oversee schools.
But this is not all on Governor Lee. The Republican controlled state legislature is equally responsible for this debacle – by passing this law without allowing referendum votes or local government approval.
And let’s remember, the law was passed after the former state House speaker held up the voting so he could twist the arm of one reluctant Republican lawmaker.
So instead of wasting more taxpayer money fighting this case in court, the governor should put a stop to this charade. The school voucher law has been ruled an unconstitutional disaster. Private schools can take care of themselves. The focus now by Governor Lee should be on helping public schools deal with an awful pandemic – that has interrupted learning, ruined prep sports, and created angst among teachers, staff, and parents.
The truth is, we all want our children to go to good schools, but the voucher plan is not the answer. And that’s should be it. And that’s my point of view.