Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey has signed into law a major expansion of his state’s school choice program, transforming it into a near-universal option for students across the state.
Education savings accounts represent a breakthrough in public education financing. Instead of sending funding directly to district schools, and then assigning children to those schools based on where their parents live, parents receive 90 percent of what the state would have spent on their child in their district school, with funds being deposited directly into a parent-controlled account.
In Arizona currently, that is typically around $5,300 for a student, annually, and closer to $14,000 annually for a child with special needs.
Once the state per-pupil funds are deposited into a child’s account, the family can then use those funds for any education-related service, product, or provider. Parents can roll over unused funds from year to year in anticipation of future education-related expenses.