Scholarship bill still stands a chance

Scholarship bill still stands a chance

Scholarship bill still stands a chance

The press secretary for an organization that works to empower families with the freedom to choose the best K-12 education for their children says even though the Iowa Legislature has refused to pass Gov. Kim Reynolds' (R) signature measure to establish a school choice scholarship program, the effort is not dead.

KCCI.com reports that the Senate Study bill 3080, or the so-called "Student First Scholarship" bill, would have given $5,300 to 10,000 students per year. It also would have increased transparency requirements for public schools; districts would have been required to publish all textbook titles and education materials and also adopt a state protocol for removing books from school shelves.

The Senate passed the bill, but the measure did not have the votes to pass the House. Walter Blanks of the American Federation for Children explains that legislators from rural districts did not see how it would be beneficial.

Blanks, Walter (AFC) Blanks

"We definitely shouldn't limit opportunity for children who can benefit from this just because they may not live in your districts or the area that you govern," Blanks responds.

He adds, though, that Gov. Reynolds has vowed to bring the bill back in the next legislative session if she wins her upcoming reelection bid.

"She's already said she'll be back next year, pending her reelection, and she's going to make this her top priority," Blanks tells AFN. "It's still at the top of her list to do, and she's so passionate about supporting the needs of students in Iowa."

Despite the loss, Gov. Reynolds reportedly feels good about the progress The Hawkeye State has made for education, and she has pledged to make it a major campaign issue.