A special state committee on high school dropouts on Tuesday appeared to nix the idea of a private school voucher program for those students, but left open the possibility of the state contracting with private firms to help dropouts complete their education.
Before adopting its long-range plan to reduce the dropout rate and improve the college and workforce readiness of high school graduates in Texas, the nine-member state panel reacted to widespread criticism from education groups that it was opening the door to a limited voucher program.
Key members of the High School Completion and Success Initiative Council said they don’t believe a traditional school voucher program could be launched without approval of the Legislature. Under a voucher program, students can attend any school their parents choose – private or public – at state expense.
“I do not read this language in any way supporting a voucher program,” said Don McAdams, a member of the council and former president of the Houston school board.
His reference was to language in the council’s plan that states, “All students should have the opportunity to select from multiple pathways, including alternative delivery systems, to achieve postsecondary success.”