The future of Tennessee’s school voucher law is now up to the courts, say Otis Sanford

Local News

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) – Local 24 News political analyst and commentator Otis Sanford shares his point of view on the lawsuit over school vouchers in Tennessee.

You knew it was bound to happen – and it has: a legal fight over school vouchers, one of the most controversial pieces of legislation in recent Tennessee history. It seems as if everyone is involved – local governments and school districts in two counties, a group of parents, lawyers in and out of Tennessee, and one state lawmaker who can’t seem to shake conflict of interest charges.

The legislation will allow some students in struggling schools to use taxpayer money to enroll in private schools. It was Gov. Bill Lee’s signature initiative last year. But both Democrats and Republicans opposed it. And it had to be amended to cover only Shelby and Davidson County to gain passage.

That’s why Shelby County and metro Nashville – along with the school districts in both places – filed suit, asking that the voucher law be delayed and eventually scrapped. But now, a group of parents will file a suit of their own to prevent SCS and Nashville public schools from trying to block the voucher law.

In the middle of all this is state Sen. Brian Kelsey, who has agreed to do legal work in support of the parents. And that raises yet another potential conflict of interest for Kelsey.

I’ve said all along that the voucher law was half baked from the start. Now it’s up to the courts to straighten it out. And that’s my point of view. I’m Otis Sanford, for Local 24 News.

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