Arizona voters have the opportunity to show their state’s lawmakers – and the entire nation – that they support their public schools by voting NO on Proposition 305. Thanks to a successful and hard-fought grassroots campaign, the November ballot will include a question about expanding Arizona’s voucher program (currently targeted to special categories of children) to all 1.1 million students in the state.

A NO vote on the November referendum will keep public funds in the public schools, instead of diverting those resources to pay for vouchers for private and religious education. This is a particularly important vote in Arizona, where 95% of students attend public schools, while the state ranks 48th in the country in terms of public school funding level.

According to the “National Report Card: Is School Funding Fair?” published by the Rutgers University Graduate School of Education and Education Law Center, Arizona receives an “F” in the “Effort” category, meaning the state makes a lower than average effort to fund its public schools.

The grassroots group that spearheaded the voter referendum, Save Our Schools Arizona, is leading the campaign for the NO vote. The goal is to make sure there are no further cuts to public education, especially since a whopping $4.65 billion has already been cut since 2009. The organization notes that $160 million could be diverted from the state’s public schools – every year – if the expanded voucher program is implemented.

Arizona public school advocates know what many states, and even the federal government, have found to be true – voucher programs are highly unpopular and therefore extremely difficult to establish or expand. In November, Arizona voters will get the chance to save their schools and send a message that will be heard across the country: Just Say NO to Vouchers!

For more information about vouchers, visit Voucher Watch on the ELC website.

Press Contact:

Sharon Krengel
Policy and Outreach Director
973-624-1815, x 24

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Press Contact:
Sharon Krengel
Director of Policy, Strategic Partnerships and Communications
973-624-1815, x240