Why should you care???
If vouchers pass, every public school in the state will be negatively impacted. The fiscal note on this bill expands to $130 million per year. That's $130 million taken from public school budgets that are already so strapped for funding that several districts are suing the state for lack of funding for necessities (like toilet paper).
(Note: Many think that $130 million fiscal note is a low figure because the staffer who came up with that specific fiscal note amount last year no longer works for the state and has ties to the Friedman Foundation, a pro-voucher organization. So realistically, the fiscal impact to public schools potentially could be much worse than $130 million. A new fiscal note should be done that is more realistic, but this voucher bill is being rushed through quickly without consideration before the public even realizes what is happening.)
Here's where we need YOU to take action... These are the names of the committee members below. Please call them personally and tell them you want them to vote NO on the voucher bill. They need to hear personally from citizens in their districts and SOON!
- If they vote for vouchers, they are abandoning public education and the thousands of children in the public schools within their districts.
- Vouchers have not improved outcomes in other states, but have opened Pandora's box to mismanagement and fraud with taxpayer money.
- Private schools are not accountable to taxpayers or to legislators.
- Could these vouchers be used to fund Muslim schools of indoctrination? or segregated schools that exclude certain demographics? Yes, they certainly could.
- Private schools can not serve EVERY child, but can and will cherry-pick and discard students.
- Representative David Alexander - Thank him for his past votes against vouchers.
(District 39, Franklin, Moore, Marion Counties)
- Representative Joe Armstrong - Thank him for his past votes against vouchers.
(District 16, Knox County)
- Representative Kevin Brooks - Needs calls. He has voted for vouchers in the past.
(District 34, Bradley County)
- Representative Karen Camper - Thank her for her past votes against vouchers.
(District 87, Shelby County)
- Representative Mike Carter - He's voted for vouchers in the past. Needs to hear from constituents.
(District 29, Hamilton County)
- Representative Barbara Cooper - Thank her for her past votes against vouchers.
(District 86, Shelby County)
- Representative Bill Dunn - He is a sponsor of the voucher bill. He needs to hear from public school supporters in his district.
(District 16, Knox County)
- Representative Craig Fitzhugh - Thank him for his past votes against vouchers.
(District 82, Lauderdale, Crockett, Haywood Counties)
- Representative Brenda Gilmore - Thank her for her past votes against vouchers.
(District 54, Davidson County)
- Representative David Hawk - Thank him for his past votes against vouchers.
(District 5, Greene County)
- Representative Patsy Hazlewood - Unfortunately, she has voted for vouchers in the past. She needs to hear from public school supporters in her district.
(District 27, Hamilton County)
- Representative Gary Hicks - Thank him for his past votes against vouchers.
615-741-7480 (District 9, Hancock, Hawkins Counties)
- Representative Matthew Hill - Thank him for his past votes against vouchers.
(District 7, Washington County)
- Representative Curtis Johnson - Needs calls. He has voted for vouchers in the past.
(District 68, Montgomery County)
- Representative Susan Lynn - She has voted for vouchers in the past, but she has a strong primary opponent running against her in the next election, so pressure her to vote against vouchers and not abandon the public school children in her district.
(District 57, Wilson County)
- Representative Gerald McCormick - Was once opposed to vouchers, but then flip-flopped. Needs calling.
(District 26, Hamilton County)
- Representative Steve McDaniel - Thank him for his past votes against vouchers.
(District 72, Henderson, Chester, Decatur, Perry Counties)
- Representative Steve McManus - Thank him for his past votes against vouchers.
(District 96, Shelby County)
- Representative Larry Miller - Thank him for his past votes against vouchers.
(District 88, Shelby County)
- Representative Bo Mitchell - Thank him for his past votes against vouchers.
(District 50, Davidson County)
- Representative Charles Sargent - Voted for vouchers, but he's up for re-election soon.
(District 61, Williamson County)
- Representative Curry Todd - Thank him for his past votes against vouchers. (And also wish him a speedy recovery from his recent surgery.)
(District 95, Shelby County)
I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that as a member of this General Assembly, I will, in all appointments, vote without favor, affection, partiality, or prejudice; and that I will not propose or assent to any bill, vote or resolution, which shall appear to me injurious to the people, or consent to any act or thing, whatever, that shall have a tendency to lessen or abridge their rights and privileges, as declared by the Constitution of this state.
This voucher bill is injurious to the thousands of children in public schools across Tennessee. It will divert funding from the public schools that children and their parents depend upon. It will lessen and abridge their right to a free public education. Please, don't let this happen. Take action and make some calls!!!