skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Thursday, June 13, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Republicans have put Merrick Garland in contempt of Congress; state legislatures are missing people from working-class jobs, and FDA has advice for formulating the next COVID vaccine for a new strain.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

House Republicans vote to hold AG Merrick Garland in contempt of Congress. The Senate battles it out over federal protections for in vitro fertilization. North Dakota becomes the first state to impose an age cutoff to run for Congress.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Rural America's job growth is up, but still hasn't recovered from the pandemic, about one in five rural Americans lives in a town with a prison, rural women seeking birth control have a new option, and dark skies beckon as summer arrives.

Election Outcome Could Bring Big Changes to NH Public Schools

play audio
Play

Monday, November 7, 2022   

Republicans in New Hampshire have already submitted bills to expand the eligibility requirements for the state's Education Freedom Accounts Program. But critics say diverting more public-education dollars to private, religious and home schools is draining resources for public schools which teach the majority of children.

One bill aims to increase the eligibility cap, allowing families making 500% of the federal poverty level to receive the public funds. Another bill aims to lift the cap entirely.

Sarah Robinson, education justice campaign director for Granite State Progress, charged the real goal of the legislation is not to improve educational choices, but to dismantle the public school system.

"It is a resource that 90% of us choose to use," Robinson pointed out. "So I do believe that many of us care about this institution and want to preserve it and nurture it, and make it even better."

Supporters of school choice say it offers lower-income students learning opportunities they would not otherwise be able to afford. But Robinson pointed to pushback from places like Croydon, where residents organized a nonpartisan movement to reverse dramatic cuts to their town's education budget earlier this year.

New Hampshire's Constitution prohibits using tax dollars for schools "of any religious sect or denomination."

Education Freedom Accounts are similar to other school voucher programs nationwide, created after the U.S. Supreme Court banned school segregation in the 1950s. Vouchers allowed white students to attend selective private schools, leaving more students of color in underfunded public schools.

Robinson noted today, 90% of recipients in New Hampshire are already being home-schooled, or enrolled in private schools.

"It becomes problematic when we start to siphon these agreed upon public dollars to organizations that do not have the same level of transparency as what is required at the public school level," Robinson contended.

Private, religious and home schools do not share the same requirements for teacher licensing or accommodating students with disabilities.

The push for Education Freedom Accounts comes as many public schools face critical shortage of teachers and staff.

Robinson noted the state's "banned concepts" law, which restricts how teachers can talk about racism, sexism and other issues related to inequality, has had a chilling effect on classrooms.

"If you are not trusted with the job you have been trained to do, then for lots of folks, they question why they should remain," Robinson explained.

She said the future of Education Freedom Accounts in New Hampshire could be determined by Tuesday's election, although the majority of families have already elected to keep their children in public school.

Disclosure: The Granite State Progress Education Fund and Granite State Progress contribute to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy and Priorities, Gun Violence Prevention, Health Issues, and Women's Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
more stories
An Associated Press/NORC poll found 47% of people are unlikely to purchase an electric vehicle, with the biggest reason being the high cost. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

As New York and New Jersey transition to electric vehicles, consumers have mixed feelings about it. Polls show fewer than half of New York drivers …


Environment

play sound

Kentucky will receive $74 million to clean up legacy pollution in regions decimated by decades of coal mining. The money is part of $725 million in …

Social Issues

play sound

Legislation in Connecticut could help reduce the ongoing child care workforce shortage Reports show some 40,000 child care positions unfilled…


Pew researchers said 79% of Americans favor maximum-age limits for federal elected officials. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

The age of both presidential front-runners has drawn extra attention in this year's race and meanwhile, North Dakota voters this week embraced …

Health and Wellness

play sound

The Food and Drug Administration has advised makers of the COVID-19 vaccine to formulate the next dosage to fight the JN.1 strain of the virus…

New data show nearly 30% of Generation Z adults identify as LGBTQ+, according to the Human Rights Campaign. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

Full-time LGBTQ+ workers make about 90 cents for every dollar earned by the average worker in the U.S. Today is LGBTQ+ Equal Pay Awareness Day…

Environment

play sound

About 1.6 million acres of Great Plains grasslands were destroyed in 2021 alone, according to a recent report, an area the size of Delaware. One …

Social Issues

play sound

Help is available for people looking to break out of a low-wage, "go-nowhere" job because the nonprofit Merit America is expanding its training …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021