AUSTIN—Today, the Texas Public Policy Foundation released the paper, “How Education Savings Accounts Could Help Texas’ Most Vulnerable Students Succeed.”

The paper, written by TPPF’s Senior Education Policy Advisor Kara Belew, explores the effects school choice, specifically Education Savings Accounts (ESAs) modeled after those proposed in SB 3, could have for economically disadvantaged urban children.

“Over 606,000 children in Texas are currently assigned – often without a choice – to a D or F graded school where they are not learning to read or do math at grade level,” said Belew. “In fact, in Texas’ largest urban school districts, 64 percent of economically disadvantaged children score below grade level in reading. The outcomes for these vulnerable children would be improved if they were given a choice to attend an accredited school or other option through Education Savings Accounts modeled after SB3.”

Key Points:

  • Texas’ economically disadvantaged urban children are in a reading and math learning crisis. Sixty-four percent score below grade level in reading, while 59 percent score below grade level in math.
  • Urban children are unnecessarily set up for failure by being assigned—without an alternative—to a traditional public school that is not teaching them how to read or domath.
  • The quality of a child’s education should not depend on his or her parents’ income or ZIP code.
  • Quality studies show that providing parents of Texas’ economically disadvantaged urban children education savings accounts, modeled after those proposed in SB 3, which passed the Texas Senate in 2017, would improve their educational attainment.
  • ESA funding will give parents the opportunity to choose the education services best suited to their child’s unique needs, including attending an accredited Texas private school.

To access the paper in full, please visit:
https://www.texaspolicy.com/how-education-savings-accounts-could-help-texas-most-vulnerable-students-succeed/

For more information, please contact Sarah Silberstein at ssilberstein@texaspolicy.com or 512-472-2700.