Hundreds of teachers, parents and students rallied outside the Texas state Capitol on Tuesday in support of a proposal that would allow parents to use taxpayer dollars to send public school students to private schools.
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said the proposal is centered on “school choice,” and that he hopes the voucher program would promote equity by making it easier for low-income and high-academic-need students to attend private schools.
“In fact, many of the people who fight school choice are sending their kids to private school, but if you’re not rich, you don’t have that same opportunity,” Patrick said at the rally. “I want school choice, equity, fairness and hope for every child, whether you’re rich or you’re poor.”
Patrick has made school vouchers one of his priorities for this legislative session. The Texas House did not vote on a voucher proposal that passed the Senate in 2015; this time, he said, House members should vote.
“If you block a bill from a vote on school choice, you are blocking the future of that child, of that family, of that American dream,” he said.