Tenn. voucher plan advances in House

7:12 PM, Feb 26, 2013   |    comments
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- A proposal to create a school voucher program in Tennessee is advancing in the House.

The administration bill proposed by Republican Gov. Bill Haslam was approved 6-2 in the House Education Subcommittee on Tuesday.

Under the governor's legislation, the plan -- which backers are calling the "opportunity scholarship program" -- would be limited to 5,000 students in the school year that begins in August and grow to 20,000 by 2016.

It would be open to students in low-income families or those who qualify for free or reduced-priced lunches.

Proponents of the measure say it is another option for parents seeking to provide a better education for their children, but those against the proposal say voucher programs are unproven and they don't like the idea of taking needed funds from public schools and giving them to private institutions.

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