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Follow the money: Taxpayer dollars funding private schools

How vouchers are impacting public schools right now
Posted: 6:00 AM, Jan 30, 2020
Updated: 2020-01-31 17:30:45-05
Ed Choice

UPDATE: Lawmakers have voted to push back the enrollment period for vouchers that was scheduled to start on Feb. 1 for 60 days. The move heads to Governor Mike DeWine's office. Read more, here.

Families across Ohio are anxiously waiting for word about who qualifies for EdChoice vouchers next year. The criteria for getting a voucher to attend a private school is still the subject of debate just days before enrollment in the program begins Feb 1.

State lawmakers are trying to make eleventh hour reforms to the program, which left unchanged would double the amount of public schools deemed failing.

As lawmakers figure out the future of school choice, here is a snapshot of what's happening this school year.

READ MORE: The cost of choice: Most students who benefit from Ohio EdChoice vouchers have always attended private school

When a student uses a voucher, money is subtracted from the public school district where they live, $6,000 for a high school student, $4,650 for a K-8 student. This year, the Akron School District lost more than $7 million, so did Cleveland Heights - University Heights. Euclid lost nearly $6 million, Lorain lost nearly $4 million and Parma lost more than $2 million.

A majority of the voucher money went to religious schools. More than $700,000 went from the Akron City School district to Saint Vincent-Saint Mary school. In Cleveland Heights, more than $2 million went to the Hebrew Academy of Cleveland.

Forty private and religious schools collected more than $1 million in public voucher money. Other private schools received very little funding or did not accept vouchers at all.