Arizona's School Voucher Program Struggles Due To Lack Of Funds

By Bridget Dowd
Howard Fischer, Capitol Media Services
Published: Thursday, October 24, 2019 - 10:21am
Updated: Thursday, October 24, 2019 - 12:29pm

Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman said she needs more funding to carry out Arizona’s school voucher program. Parents have complained about slow responses, and missed deadlines to enroll their children. 

The Department of Education is supposed to get $3.6 million for the voucher program but has only received $1.6 million.

Gov. Doug Ducey said he knows more resources are necessary but thinks lawmakers can do better on Educational Savings Accounts.

“We want families that properly qualify for this benefit to be able to access it so their kids can get the proper education," Ducey said. "We believe that the parent knows better on that. We're going to work closely with the superintendent so we can fix this issue.”

The Department of Education has struggled with getting proper funding. Former Superintendent Diane Douglas went as far as sending letters to the governor, the Legislature and the auditor general asking why full funding was not provided. 

Despite calls to make the program whole, Ducey signed a budget this year for just a fraction of the support needed. 

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