Idaho Families Closer to Educational Freedom

Today the Idaho House Education Committee approved legislation establishing a scholarship for families who need additional education alternatives to fit their child’s unique learning needs.

House Bill 590 now heads to the House floor for further consideration.

The bill would create the GEM (Guided Education Management) Scholarship and would provide a private scholarship option for students from low-income households (a family of four making less than $46,000 a year), students with special needs, students who are considered at-risk and children of active duty military personnel. These scholarships would help families afford what they believe to be the best education option for their child.

There is no additional cost for taxpayers. GEM Scholarships would be funded by private individuals or corporations who would receive a tax credit for the amount contributed to the scholarship fund.

“Idaho’s public schools do a wonderful job of helping their students succeed. But all Idaho families – regardless of income or ZIP Code – deserve the freedom to explore all education options for their children.

“I want to thank bill sponsors House Education Chair Julie VanOrden, Representatives John Vander Woude, Wendy Horman, Gayann DeMordaunt, Ron Mendive, Paul Shepherd, Lance Clow, Don Cheatham, Dorothy Moon, Barbara Ehardt, Steven Harris, Sage Dixon and Bryan Zollinger for their leadership.”

Tom Greene, Regional Advocacy Director for ExcelInEd in Action