Ohio lawmakers are considering a new piece of legislation called the “Backpack Bill,” which aims to create a universal school choice program in the state.
Under the proposed law, eligible public, non-public, or homeschooled students would receive an educational savings account starting in the 2024-2025 school year.
This account would provide up to $7,500 to support a student’s enrollment in a chartered or non-chartered non-public school or homeschooling.
The bill’s sponsors argue that it promotes parental involvement by giving families more educational options and is not anti-public school.
While the bill could cost the state up to $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2025 if all eligible students take advantage of the scholarship, lawmakers assume only a 10% uptake in the first year.
The Backpack Bill has close to 30 Republican co-sponsors and is expected to have its second hearing next week.