Efforts to pass legislation giving Texas parents more school choice options could gain traction this year. The Texas Tribune wants to hear from families about the options they’re seeking in the public school system — and how they might be looking for the state’s help to pay for private school.

Texas politicians have thus far been divided on how far to push legislation on “private school choice,” which would spend state money on private school tuition and homeschooling expenses. Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick is championing a controversial bill this legislative session that would give parents debit cards loaded with taxpayer money to pay for private school tuition and other education expenses. Proponents say parents should be able to take their children out of failing schools, while critics say redirecting funds would only hurt public education.

When it comes to the public school system, some advocates have called for legislation to increase the number of public open-enrollment charter schools, which use state money but are operated privately or by nonprofits. A couple of legislators have also filed bills in recent months to expand the options for parents who want to transfer students from low-performing neighborhood schools to higher-performing schools in different districts.

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We are reaching out to families who would be affected by changing state and national policies on education funding. We’re looking for stories from Texas families who feel they could benefit from a voucher to send their kids to private schools — and those who feel they wouldn’t qualify. We want to hear about your experiences switching public schools, within or between districts. What laws do and don’t help you get the education you want for your children? 

Help shape our reporting by sharing your experience below.

 

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