This week Michigan’s legislature quickly passed identical bills in the House and Senate that would “provide tax credits to residents who contributed to a scholarship program for students to use on alternative or supplemental education, including nonpublic schools.”
The “Student Opportunity Scholarship Act” would create a student scholarship program geared toward low-income and special needs students, giving eligible students and families more flexibility and educational choice.
The legislation would also help to address some of the disparities in educational options available to students by allowing families to use their education dollars at a school of their choice—public or private—as well as for tutoring, instructional materials, educational therapies, and more.
And after 18 months of pandemic learning, alternative education opportunities are more essential than ever before.
Critics of the bill claim that the scholarship program is nothing more than an unconstitutional voucher program, as the Michigan Constitution bans spending public money directly or indirectly on private schools.
The bill is now headed to Governor Gretchen Witmer—a Democrat—where, similar to the situation in Pennsylvania, it’s not likely to receive a warm reception.