Ohio lawmakers may have saved the best for last in a remarkable year for parental choice programs. School Choice Ohio ran down all the private school provisions here but briefly Ohio lawmakers created an afterschool enrichment Education Savings Account. They also created a new private choice scholarship tax credit, and expanded the funding and eligibility of existing voucher programs.
The new Ohio budget also created a small tax credit for home-schooling expenses, eliminated a statewide cap on the number of EdChoice scholarships, and phased out prior public attendance requirements for EdChoice scholarships. Also charter schools, which had been limited to certain challenged districts, can now operate in any Ohio district.
Florida, Indiana, New Hampshire, Ohio and West Virginia enacted school choice reforms that in any “normal” legislative season likely would have been the biggest move of the year. New states like Missouri and Kentucky passed the first programs in their states. Pennsylvania lawmakers increased the cap on their state’s tax credit by $40 million. Lawmakers in Arkansas, Arizona, Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Montana, South Dakota, Nevada and Oklahoma all either improved existing programs or created new ones.
The 2020-21 school year also saw a large increase in charter school enrollment, a large to gigantic increase in home-schooling (estimates vary) and the emergence of a micro-schooling sector.
Not everyone however seems to have got the message:
The Centers for Disease Control is allowing COVID-19 vaccines for children the age of 12 and older. While vaccinating children for COVID-19 would contribute to herd-immunity, it is worth recalling that children have been more likely to die from the normal flu than COVID and that school staff were among the first groups to access COVID-19 vaccines. The mere suggestion of disrupting another school year on such spurious grounds is a vulgar display of entitlement.