tr?id=&ev=PageView&noscript=

NH Republicans’ school voucher expansion plan fails

NH Republicans’ school voucher expansion plan fails

Republican legislation that proposed expanding eligibility for New Hampshire’s school voucher program to families earning 450% of the federal poverty level failed on the last day of the 2024 New Hampshire legislative session, dealing a stunning blow to state Republicans’ conservative education agenda. (Colin Booth/Granite Post)

By Colin Booth

June 13, 2024

Republican legislation that proposed expanding eligibility for New Hampshire’s school voucher program to families earning 450% of the federal poverty level failed on the last day of the 2024 New Hampshire legislative session, dealing a stunning blow to state Republicans’ conservative education agenda.

Eligibility for the program, dubbed “education freedom accounts” remains at 350% of the federal poverty level, or $109,200 for a family of four. The median income in New Hampshire for a family of four is $133,447.

This is the second major blow to State Republicans’ education agenda in recent days. A  federal judge last month overturned the Republicans’ so-called “divisive concepts” legislation, which bars New Hampshire teachers from certain discussions on race. That bill was part of a wave of conservative legislation that passed in the wake of the murder of George Floyd and the civil unrest that followed.

RELATED: NH Republicans vote to expand school voucher program, potentially tripling cost to NH taxpayers

State Representative Mel Myler, ranking Democrat on the House Education committee, said the bill was just another step in Republican efforts to expand the program to make it universal to all students.

“The EFA advocates ultimately want this program to eventually become a universal program available to all families, regardless of their income level to access public tax dollars and further drain needed tax dollars away from the overwhelmingly publicly supported public education,” Myler said on the floor before the vote.

House Republicans seethed over the loss.

“Democrats have repeatedly attempted to dismantle the program. Giving more Granite State children the opportunity to benefit from EFAs remains one of our top priorities,”  said Republican House Majority Leader Jason Osborne.

Osborne pledged to continue running on the deeply conservative education agenda that has seen House Republicans endure consistent losses in House Special elections and in the 2022 midterms.

Author

  • Colin Booth

    Based in Epsom, Colin Booth is Granite Post's political correspondent. A Granite State native and veteran political professional with a deep background in journalism, he's worked on campaigns and programs in battleground states across the country, ranging from New Hampshire, Texas, Pennsylvania and Washington D.C.

CATEGORIES:
Related Stories
Share This