As the Senate Education Committee took up HB 21 Thursday morning, the school finance reform bill (some version of which must pass if the more than $1.5 billion in new funding authorized by the House is to be distributed), Chair Larry Taylor added a limited voucher proposal in the form of education savings accounts for special needs students. UPDATE: HB 21 passed favorably out of committee later Thursday.

This version is likely to pass easily through the Senate, but negotiations between the House and Senate will be intense. The House is very supportive of increasing funding for public education, but has historically (including during the current session) opposed private school voucher programs. TCTA will keep our members updated regarding the progress of HB 21 through the Senate.