Vouchers Harm Public Education

Yesterday, at a press conference at the AZ Capitol, parents, teachers, school board members, and superintendents explained how vouchers harm Arizona’s low-income communities and children of color the most. View the full press conference HERE

“Fighting for civil rights means making every public school and every student a winner, not by manipulating the system with vouchers to create winners and losers,” said Berdetta Hodge, Vice President of the Arizona School Boards Association’s Black Alliance, Tempe Union High School Governing Board member, and SOSAZ Network Board member. 

“Many of our Native communities face barriers that an ESA does not help or resolve,” said Desiree Fowler, a Page Unified School District board member and past president of ASBA’s Hispanic-Native American Indian Caucus. ”It’s our public schools that provide many services to our Native children that a private school never provides such as transportation, food, social workers, sports and cultural awareness. What we really need is to fund the schools our Native communities live in.”

Senate Bill 1452, passed by the AZ Senate but currently in limbo in the AZ House of Representatives, would expand public-school-destroying ESA vouchers to more than 800,000 out of Arizona’s 1.1 million school children, effectively diverting hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer funds into private pockets. 

AZ voters overwhelmingly rejected Prop 305 only 2 years ago. What can you do to fix this Groundhog Day nightmare scenario? Call the bill’s sponsor, Paul Boyer (602-926-4173) and tell him to withdraw the bill. Then call House Speaker Rusty Bowers (602-926-3128) and ask him to hold the bill indefinitely. 

It’s in our name,

Save Our Schools Arizona

PS: Don’t want to take our word for it?  Read this Capitol Times piece from CEOs Jim Swanson and John Graham, who chair the Greater Phoenix Leadership Education committee and represent hundreds of CEOs in the Valley. 

“A full expansion of ESAs is nothing more than a boutique scheme to address a non-existent need for private school subsidies. While being marketed as a solution for low-income students and students of color – the students whom data tells us need the most wide-scale, institutional support – SB1452 is the most offensive of the private school voucher bills proposed this session. The bill would make roughly 700,000 Arizona students eligible for ESAs – a 280% increase in a single move. This is nothing more than a bold attempt to privatize education.”