Agudath Israel Welcomes Education Freedom Scholarships (PHOTOS)

Agudath Israel of America applauds U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos and congressional sponsors Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Representative Bradley Byrne (R-AL) for leading the effort to increase school choice for families nationwide. The Education Freedom Scholarships and Opportunity Act they unveiled today will provide billions of dollars in tax credits to support state-designed scholarship programs. Providing a dollar-for-dollar tax credit will encourage individuals and businesses to invest in education.

Currently, 18 states have scholarship tax credit programs which have helped hundreds of thousands of students attend the school of their choice, public or private. Jewish day school families, among many others, have been beneficiaries of such programs. A federal tax credit would enhance existing programs and allow states to provide more educational options to all of their students.

Rabbi Abba Cohen, Agudath Israel’s Vice President of Government Affairs was one of the invited guests at the Department of Education event where the details of the bill were unveiled this morning. Following the event he said, “We encourage lawmakers, Republican and Democratic, to put a bipartisan stamp on the common-sense policy that is at the heart of this bill: assisting parents to provide the learning environment that is the best fit for their child.”

“Agudath Israel has played a key role in advancing school choice across the nation, yet half of the states in this country have not yet enacted a state program,” said Rabbi A. D. Motzen, Agudath Israel’s National Director of State Relations. “Offering a federal incentive and allowing scholarships to be used for a broad range of educational expenses is exactly what is needed to encourage all states to opt in to this major investment in education.”

On Tuesday, March 5th at 2:30 p.m. EST Agudath Israel will be hosting a webinar/conference call to discuss the details of the bill, what it can mean for our community, and ways to help this effort succeed.

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