Tennessee to launch controversial school voucher program

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Eligible students in Memphis will be able to enroll in Tennessee’s controversial school voucher program for the upcoming school year.

The governor’s office announced that the courts lifted the injunction blocking its launch Wednesday.

In May, Tennessee’s highest court ruled that Republican Gov. Bill Lee’s school voucher program does not violate the state’s constitution, clearing the path for families to use taxpayer dollars on private schools soon.

READ MORE: Court clears path for long-blocked Tennessee school vouchers

The decision overturned several lower court rulings that previously said the program violated the Tennessee constitution.

It means some students will be able to use state money for private school tuition.

MORE: How Tennessee school vouchers could impact Shelby County students and parents

Gov. Lee released the following statement in response to the court lifting the injunction on the Education Savings Account (ESA) program passed by the Lee Administration in 2019.

“Today, the court removed the final roadblock to getting Memphis and Nashville families additional options for high-quality education,” said Gov. Lee. “Starting today, we will work to help eligible parents enroll this school year, as we ensure Tennessee families have the opportunity to choose the school that they believe is best for their child.”

The Tennessee Department of Education will make ESA resources available online for parents in the coming days.