Teachers File Lawsuit Against School Voucher Law

From WTVD, the ABC television station in Raleigh:

Advocacy groups representing parents and public education are suing North Carolina officials after the General Assembly passed a law this year allowing taxpayer money to help pay private school tuition.

The North Carolina Association of Educators and the North Carolina Justice Center filed their lawsuit Wednesday in Wake County Superior Court, saying the new law violates the state constitution’s requirement that public money go exclusively to free, public schools.

“Now we have no problem with private schools, no problem with home schools … we have a vibrant system of home schools in North Carolina, it’s terrific, but we don’t ask taxpayers to fund it,” said Burton Craig, the union’s attorney.

The state’s top two lawmakers said in response that more than a dozen other states have similar, successful programs.

The law will allow low-income students to take $4,200 a year in taxpayer money to pay for private school tuition beginning in 2014. Lawmakers say they want to expand the program beyond the $10 million budgeted in the first year.