While the Washoe County School District has recently criticized the cost of implementing Read by Grade 3, Gov. Brian Sandoval defended the law he has touted as a game changer for Nevada’s school children.
The Nevada State Education Association, which strongly opposes a controversial plan to resurrect Education Savings Accounts in Nevada, organized the town-hall event. Christopher and Sarah Lubienski, who authored “The Public School Advantage: Why Public Schools Outperform Private Schools,” kicked off the event by describing their research.
Nevada has had an Education Savings Account program for two years now, but whether students will ever be able to use it rests in the hands of state Democrats who have made clear they’d prefer it didn’t exist.
State Sen. Scott Hammond, R-Las Vegas, is carrying the bill that would revive the education savings account – or ESA – program. ESA’s passed the 2015 Legislature along party lines when Republicans controlled both chambers. The program would have given parents around $5,100 if they pulled their children from the public school system.
Clark County School District Trustee Kevin Child told a classroom of second-graders in 2014 that “snitches get stitches” and that one of them would end up in jail, according to a complaint obtained by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
The fate of education savings accounts in Nevada could hinge, in part at least, on a turf battle between Treasurer Dan Schwartz and the Legislature, including, surprisingly, his ideological colleagues, Nevada Republicans.
Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval said Tuesday he agrees with Sen. Scott Hammond and will not propose any kind of income or means test for the Education Savings Account program he is seeking to fund this session.
Some opponents of Education Savings Accounts say Nevada’s version of school choice is dead. But the Legislature continues to discuss the program’s budget, and two new bills — meant to shore up the ESA program — are anticipated to be introduced before mid-March.
A hearing Tuesday to examine a proposed Educational Savings Account budget became a debate about the viability of ESAs and an examination of Nevada State Treasurer Dan Schwartz’s management of the program since its creation during the last Legislature.