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Press Release

Tennessee Expands Education Savings Accounts

Today, the Tennessee General Assembly expanded the state’s geographically-limited Education Savings Account (ESA) program to Hamilton County, which encompasses the state’s fourth-largest city of Chattanooga. Previously, only students in Davidson and Shelby counties and students in the Memphis-area Achievement School District were eligible.

AFC and its affiliates have invested more than $9 million in bringing education options to the families of Tennessee. We are thrilled to see that investment directly translate into educational freedom for students.

Statement from John Patton, State Director, American Federation for Children-Tennessee:

“We sincerely thank bill sponsors Senator Todd Gardenhire and Representative Mark White for putting students over systems. While we are disappointed that the proposed expansion into Knox County was ultimately not part of the final bill, today marks an important step forward for Tennessee families. AFC-TN celebrates that because of this bill, thousands more families can afford an educational environment that works for them. We look forward to continuing to stand with families who want the freedom to choose the best K-12 education for their child.”


  • Eligibility: K-12 students who live in Hamilton, Davidson, and Shelby Counties and students in the Memphis-area Achievement School District whose family income is less than 200 percent of the Federal Free Lunch Program, or about $78,000 for a family of four.
  • Students must have attended a public school in Hamilton, Davidson, or Shelby Counties during the previous year or be entering Kindergarten to receive the ESA.
  • Each ESA is worth approximately $8,200.


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