U.S. Senators Tim Scott (R-S.C.), Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-La.), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), and Todd Young (R-Ind.) introduced the Educational Choice for Children Act. The legislation expands education freedom and opportunity for millions of students by providing a charitable donation incentive for individuals and businesses to fund scholarship awards for students to cover expenses related to K-12 public and private education, amounting to $10 billion on an annual basis.
“I’ve always said that when you give parents a choice, you give kids a better chance at achieving their dreams,” said Senator Scott. “By empowering families with more education resources, this bill could change the lives of millions of high-potential students who deserve every opportunity to succeed.”
“Giving parents the ability to make decisions over their child’s education puts that child’s needs first,” said Dr. Cassidy. “Our bill provides yet another opportunity to empower parents and allow millions of children to thrive in a school that’s best for them.”
“Montana students deserve every chance to succeed – an integral part of that success is being enrolled in an education program that’s right for them. With the right resources, there is no limit to what Montana students can achieve. I’m glad to support this legislation which will help ensure Montana parents and students have the freedom and opportunity to choose the education that best suits their needs,” said Senator Daines.
The Educational Choice for Children Act provides $10 billion in annual tax credits to be made available to taxpayers. Allotment of these credits to individuals would be administered by the Treasury Department. Additionally, the bill:
- Sets a base amount for each state. The credits would be distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis.
- Uses a limited government approach with respect to federalism, thus avoiding mandates on states, localities, and school districts.
- Includes provisions that govern Scholarship Granting Organizations (SGOs), as SGOs are given the ability to determine the individual amount of scholarship awards.
An estimated two million students in any elementary or secondary education setting, including homeschooling, are eligible to receive a scholarship. Eligible use of scholarships awards includes tuition, fees, book supplies, and equipment for enrollment or attendance at an elementary or secondary school.
With education at the top of mind for parents and families across the nation, Sen. Scott has led several efforts to give them greater autonomy over their children’s education. Recently, Sen. Scott:
- Urged the U.S. Department of Education to reconsider proposed rules redefining the Charter School Program, stripping parents of their ability to choose the best school for their child;
- Introduced the Kids in Classes Act to allow families with children in Title I schools to put unused federal education funds toward in-person education, should their school close to COVID-19 or a teachers union goes on strike;
- Reintroduced the CHOICE Act to foster children’s success by providing parents greater educational options;
- Introduced a resolution celebrating National Charter Schools Week;
- Penned a Washington Examiner op-ed with Congressman Burgess Owens about the merits of school choice;
- Released a video debunking myths surrounding school choice;
- Held a parental involvement panel to discuss the need for greater transparency within schools;
- Hosted a policy panel featuring former Secretary Condoleezza Rice and Congressman Burgess Owens to discuss how to expand education opportunity to all children;
- Signed a resolution supporting parents’ rights to be fully and actively involved in their children’s education.