Missouri Senate advances plan to expand school choice

April 11, 2017 GMT

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Missouri Senate has advanced a bill to create education savings accounts for children with disabilities, foster kids and children with parents in the military.

Senators gave the proposal initial approval in a voice vote late Monday night.

The legislation would create a tax credit for people who donate money that those parents could use for tutoring, textbooks and other education expenses.

To qualify, students must have been enrolled in public school. Money could be used for tuition at private, charter, virtual and home schools.

The bill also would require individual schools — not just districts — to be evaluated for accreditation.

Students in unaccredited schools could transfer to better-performing schools in their district. If there’s no space, they could transfer to neighboring districts or attend charter or virtual schools.