Here are the revised income limits for Lee’s school voucher plan

Gov. Bill Lee speaks at an economic development announcement in Nashville on March 20, 2019. (Erik Schelzig, Tennessee Journal)

Lawmakers last week advanced a revised version of Gov. Bill Lee’s proposal to create education savings accounts, or ESAs, in five Tennessee counties. Previously, the income limit would have been set at double the upper threshold to receive reduced-priced school lunches, which is 185% of federal poverty guidelines. The revised bill sets that amount at double the free lunch limit, which is 130% of poverty.

The ESAs would be available to parents of children currently enrolled in public schools in Shelby, Davidson, Knox, Hamilton, and Madison counties earning up to 2.6 times the poverty level (down from the 3.7 times of the original bill).

Here’s what that comes out to:

Household Original proposal Revised proposal
2 60,902 42,796
3 76,886 54,028
4 92,870 65,260
5 108,854 76,492
6 124,838 87,724
7 140,822 98,956
8 156,806 110,188

11 Responses to Here are the revised income limits for Lee’s school voucher plan

  • Silence Dogood says:

    How many poverty level (+35%) parents will take advantage of this ESA program? I think very few.

    • MarLE says:

      If they don’t really care about their children’s future why should they use ESA? They know that government-sanctioned (via the tax code) theft from those who DID bother to get an education will be there to take care of those, who through Every Fault of Their Own, have nothing.

  • Public Ed Teacher says:

    How many of the schools will actually allow the students to remain 180 days after receiving their money? Not many…. they will kick them back to home public school after 20 days and keep our tax money. Bad decisions.

  • Beth Sebastian says:

    No vouchers of any kind! Not any! Private schools ok! They do not take money from public schools! I taught at a public school that had to rely on the vending machine to pay the one line telephone bill for the school. Rediculous to have that happen!

  • John W. Niven Jr says:

    Those who care about their kids education will. Unfortunately, we can’t legislate parental responsibility.

  • Sandra Clark says:

    this strikes me as a not very well thought out proposal.

  • MarLE says:

    Love these new thresholds…..want to make sure that those with a little bit of money left over after expenses get nothing while those who have slightly less will Qualify.

    Single mom with 2 kids gets 54K; add a responsible FATHER to that household and you can only make another 11K. don’t get married; get divorced? Couple of options to help your kid’s escape plan….Is that the goal in lowering the thresholds?

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