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School Officials Support House-Approved Change to Voucher Program

a photo of school officials
Associations representing Ohio's superintendents, school treasurers, and school board members push their support for the House voucher plan at the Ohio Statehouse.

Ohio school officials say they’re backing a plan that would phase-out the private school voucher program known as EdChoice. The House-passed legislation would instead grant vouchers based on a family's income. The school groups say basing vouchers off of academic performance leaves public schools with less funding. 

More than 1,200 public school buildings are set to be designated as "failing" making students in those districts eligible for EdChoice vouchers. That's more than twice as many as last year.

Tom Perkins is the superintendent of the Northern Local Schools in Perry County. He says if this doesn’t change, more voucher money will suddenly be pulled from districts for students who were already going to private schools.

"The fear isn't the students leaving, it's the ones that are currently there that have never attended and the funding going to them that’s the real concern," Perkins says.

School groups prefer an all-income-based voucher system. But EdChoice supporters say changing it would pull the rug out from under parents who are counting on the current law.