It's all about the Special Interests!

Good government should NOT be under the influence of special interests!  Today, Governor Terry McAuliffe decided to appease the special interests by vetoing HB389, Parental Choice Education Savings Accounts – which would help parents with children who have special needs select the best measure of educating their children whether it is private school, home school, or charter school. 

This is not surprising, as Governor McAuliffe has been pandering to the special interests with many of his vetoes this session. 

Delegate Dave LaRock, who authored HB389, even made the following comment regarding Governor McAuliffe’s veto:

“I’m deeply disappointed that Governor McAuliffe would turn his back to the pleas of parents of students whose education needs are not being met in the public school setting. The Governor needs to listen to the struggles and concerns of ordinary Virginians, instead of yielding to the education establishment that throws roadblocks in front of any effort to provide better education options for Virginia’s students and parents that is not channeled through the public school system.”

“Special needs students face unique challenges that must be met, but they must have access to the resources they need. They realize education is their gateway to opportunity, but for some the gateway is blocked. While most public schools do their best, others simply will not or cannot meet all the educational needs of these students. Many parents are desperate and begging for relief; they have told me how some public schools are failing to meet the federally mandated requirements of their child’s Individualized Education Plan (IEP).

“Education Savings Accounts are a proven example of problem solving through smart innovation, not endless appropriations. Nearly 1 million children in Arizona, Florida, Mississippi, Tennessee, and Nevada are eligible for Education Savings Accounts. This school year 6,000 students are using the accounts. American voters overwhelmingly support school choice programs for good reason.  It’s time to give the people of Virginia what they are asking for; more education freedom through Education Savings Accounts.

“The Governor’s veto exemplifies why so many citizens are fed up with politicians. Instead of embracing a common-sense solution that helps people in need, saves taxpayer money, and improves educational outcomes, the Governor does what his special-interest supporters tell him to do. Virginia deserves better.

“I’m confident this program will become law eventually, but we need a governor with some compassion and understanding of the need to provide relief for these kids and schools.”

With this veto, we can only remain hopeful that we can continue this fight during the next legislative session!  School choice is vital to helping every child in the Commonwealth receive the best quality of education, and an education free from the special interests!