The West Virginia legislature passed the Hope Scholarship Program bill last year to allow low-income families to use public funds to send their children to charter, private, or religious schools, or to use for homeschooling costs. Under the law, government school students have access to savings accounts for this purpose.
Families may apply for vouchers that “equal to about $4,600 a year to start, but that could fluctuate depending on the annual state School Aid Formula.”
Leftists strongly support teachers unions over parents’ rights, and they oppose choice for children stuck in bad government schools. They claim that using taxpayers’ money in this way will reduce money for government education. Opponents challenged the law, and a lower court blocked it on the grounds that the law violated the state constitution
On appeal, however, the Supreme Court of Appeals for West Virginia reversed the lower court’s decision and upheld the program. Attorney General Patrick Morrissey praised the ruling. From the Washington Times:
Mr. Morrissey called the decision Thursday “a tremendous victory for the hard-working families across West Virginia who deserve increased options for their children’s individual educational needs.”
“This is an important law that will benefit hard-working families,” he said. “I am happy to be able to successfully defend this Act — our kids deserve the best educational options available.”
The state said the scholarships “did not draw a cent from the School Fund or take anything from appropriations reserved for public education.”
This is the kind of choice everyone should champion.