Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee has declared his intent to catch up with the pack on school choice policy. He unveiled a new proposal to expand education savings accounts (ESAs) to provide families and students with increased autonomy in choosing educational pathways.
“Nine states have passed us in this effort,” said Gov. Lee. With plans to extend ESAs to universal availability by the 2025-26 school year, Tennessee signals a commitment to achieving school choice throughout the state.
Tennessee stands as a sharp contrast to Texas, which recently backtracked on advancing school choice. Despite a strong atmosphere in favor of school choice, including pressure by Gov. Greg Abbott, school choice has stalled out. It was conservative Republicans in the Texas House who killed a recent measure out of fear that a school choice program would divert funds away from rural public schools.
Universal school choice is spreading across the nation like a prairie fire. What started decades ago as a fringe movement is becoming a realized path to educational freedom across the country. By joining the cause, Tennessee is on a path towards an educational landscape that emphasizes parental empowerment and student-focused policies. Protect The 1st is pleased by these developments and looks forward to further progress in Tennessee. We urge Texas to come to a fair agreement on rural schools and enact a school choice bill soon.