Daily VideoApril 2, 2013
Indiana Approves School Voucher Program
The Indiana Supreme Court last week upheld a law that would allow taxpayer money to fund tuition at private schools through vouchers.
Voucher programs have long been contentious; supporters claim they give students in failing schools the ability to transfer out, but opponents say they weaken the public school system as a whole.
There are now more than 15 states that allow public funds to be used for private education, though these school choice programs vary from tuition vouchers to scholarship tax credits and education savings accounts.
A 2002 Supreme Court ruling left it up to individual states to decide whether to allow vouchers or not. It ruled that vouchers, which can be used at religious schools, do not violate the separation of church and state and are therefore constitutional.
While most voucher programs target low-income families or students in failing districts, Indiana will allow families of four making up to $64,000 a year to take advantage of the program.
This means that next year, more than half of Indiana’s students will be eligible for the vouchers, which are worth up to $4,500 per child.
“What this has done, it has allowed — and the statistics are bearing it — it is allowing families the opportunity to pursue prosperity for their children,” – Tony Bennett, Former Indiana State Superintendent.
“This is not a scientific experiment. It’s an attempt in my view to just push down public education,” – State Rep. Edward Delaney, D-Ind.
1. What is the difference between public and private schools?
2. How are public schools funded?
3. What is a school voucher?
1. Do you think public funds should be used in private schools? Why or why not?
2. If a voucher is used to fund tuition at a private religious school, do you agree with the Supreme Court that this does not violate the separation of church and state? Why or why not?
3. Does your state have any voucher programs? If so, what do you know about them?
Tooltip of related stories
Tooltip of more video block
Submit Your Student Voice
An estimated 300,000 refugees have crossed the Mediterranean Sea to Europe this year, arriving in Southern European countries like Greece and quickly overwhelming local resources. Continue reading
New Orleans has spent a lot of money updating its defenses in the 10 years since Hurricane Katrina caused widespread flooding, but some fear that it may still not be enough when the next storm hits. Continue reading
The destruction of priceless antiquities by the Islamic State (ISIS) has horrified researchers worldwide, but 21st century technology offers one way of preserving ancient cultural heritage.
In the age of consumerism, can a successful clothing manufacturer also promote conservationist values? Continue reading
For the first time in U.S. history, two young women successfully completed the elite Army Ranger training program in Fort Benning, Georgia. Continue reading