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Bill Would Give State Money to Delaware Parents For Private School Tuition, Fees

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Delaware lawmakers are considering a bill that would create an educational savings account of sorts for parents who choose to send their children to private schools.

The News Journal in Delaware reports that the Parent Empowerment Education Savings Account Act, aimed a low-income familes, would set aside a percentage of per-pupil funding into accounts with the state treasurer's office to help parents pay for a variety of educational needs, including tuition, tutors, textbooks and online learning programs. Any money that left in the account once a student graduates from high school could also finance his or her college tuition and fees.

Republicans who sponsored the bill told the News Journal that the proposed legislation will probably not pass this session. Still, they believe the bill would give poor families the opportunity to choose the best schools, including private schools, for their children. 

Democratic Gov. Jack Markell is opposed to the savings accounts, likening them to school vouchers. In a statement, Jonathon Dworkin, the governor's spokesman, told the News Journal that the bill would "drain funding" from the state's public schools. 

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