Educational Choice Prevails: North Carolina state Supreme Court lifts injunction blocking voucher program

Washington, DC (May 14, 2014) – The American Federation for Children, the nation’s voice for educational choice, today celebrated a ruling from the Supreme Court of North Carolina, which lifted an injunction that had barred parents from accessing North Carolina’s Opportunity Scholarship Program.

“Educational choice is a fundamental right and we applaud the Supreme Court of North Carolina for lifting this injunction and restoring this vital program,” said Kevin P. Chavous, executive counsel to the American Federation for Children. “Today’s decision serves as a victory for 4,500 children who qualified, applied and should not be denied access to educational choice.”

The Supreme Court of North Carolina issued an order today allowing children to access the educational choice program while the program is in litigation. In December 2013, North Carolina’s largest teachers union and other organizations aligned with the traditional public education system filed a lawsuit to block and prevent the program from continuing.

Signed into law in 2013, within 25 days more than 5,500 students applied for one of the $4,200 scholarships. To qualify, children must reside in a household that qualifies for federal Free and Reduced Lunch (about $43,568 for a family of four). Despite the overwhelming demand, the program is currently capped at 2,400 spots.

Parents for an Educated North Carolina (PEFNC), a state ally of the American Federation for Children, reached families with an aggressive parental empowerment campaign. Click here to watch firsthand accounts from parents impacted by the lawsuit or engage on social media using the hashtag: #ONEof4500.

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The American Federation for Children is the nation’s leading school choice advocacy organization and works in states across the country to help secure additional, high-quality educational options for families.

 

Kevin P. Chavous is a noted attorney, author, and national school reform leader. A former member of the Council of the District of Columbia and a former chairman of D.C.’s Education Committee, Chavous was responsible for enacting numerous education reforms in D.C. Chavous also presides as board chair for Democrats for Education Reform and is a former chair of the Black Alliance for Educational Options.