Vic’s Statehouse Notes #380 – No supervision or accountability

by | Feb 20, 2024 | ICPE News

In my most recent Statehouse Notes I told you that Senate Bill 255 is a stunning proposal to give control of education funding to parents. I deeply oppose this plan and urge you to oppose it as well.

Senate Bill 255 is dead for this session, but Senator Mishler says it will be in the budget debate in 2025, which means we can ask candidates to take a stand on it before the election.

Until now, school choice was offered by giving state tuition money ($530 million per year in 2023-24) to accredited private schools, but it did not cover unaccredited homeschools. If the concepts in Senate Bill 255 are adopted (for a new additional cost of $46 million), for the first time unsupervised and unaccredited homeschools could get state tax money (approximately $7,000 per student) when parents apply for an on-line account run by the Indiana Treasurer.

Our first Gaping Flaw in this plan:

There is no supervision or accountability for parent-operated homeschools or micro schools funded by state tax dollars at approximately $7,000 per student. Unlike having a publicly chosen school board to monitor school programs, taxpayers would lose all control over the homeschools and independent schools funded by this plan. While taxpayers foot the bill, they are completely shut out of any influence over home schools.

We will examine other gaping flaws in future issues of this special series of Vic’s Statehouse Notes.

Our public schools that have served as the backbone of our democracy for 170 years deserve our support.

Thank you for your active support of public education in Indiana!

Best wishes,

Vic Smith

Vic’s Statehouse Notes and ICPE received one of three Excellence in Media Awards presented by Delta Kappa Gamma Society International, an organization of over 85,000 women educators in seventeen countries. The award was presented on July 30, 2014 during the Delta Kappa Gamma International Convention held in Indianapolis. Thank you Delta Kappa Gamma!

ICPE has worked since 2011 to promote public education in the Statehouse and oppose the privatization of schools. We need your membership to help support ICPE lobbying efforts. We need all ICPE members to renew their membership if you have not done so.

Our lobbyist Joel Hand has represented ICPE extremely well in the 2023 budget session. We need your memberships and your support to continue his work. We welcome additional members and additional donations. We need your help and the help of your colleagues who support public education! Please pass the word!

Visit ICPE’s website at for membership and renewal information and for full information on ICPE efforts on behalf of public education. Thanks!

Vic Smith is a lifelong Hoosier and began teaching in 1969, serving as a social studies teacher, curriculum developer, state research and evaluation consultant, state social studies consultant, district social studies supervisor, assistant principal, principal, educational association staff member, and adjunct university professor.

Vic received a Distinguished Alumni Award from the IU School of Education, he was named to the Teacher Education Hall of Fame by the Association for Teacher Education and received the 2018 Friend of Education Award from the Indiana State Teachers Association.

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