Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) recently spoke on a panel at the Houston Area Safety Council (HASC) about his proposed Education Freedom Scholarships and Opportunity Act. The legislation seeks to expand elementary, secondary and vocational opportunities for students by providing a federal tax credit to encourage individuals and businesses to donate to nonprofit scholarship funds.
“In my seven years serving in the Senate, my No. 1 priority is and has been jobs,” Cruz said. “Texans want more jobs, higher wages and more opportunity.”
The legislation, Cruz said, would constitute $10 billion per year, or $100 billion over 10 years, in federal tax credits focused on education. The program has two portions: The first portion ($5 billion per year) allows states to opt in. If a state does opt in, individuals and companies who give contributions to scholarship organizations for K-12 education would receive a dollar- for-dollar federal tax credit, contributing an extra $5 billion per year in funding for scholarships. Because “every state has different needs,” as Cruz pointed out, the program would be run at a state level, not out of Washington.
Cruz believes the scholarship funds would enhance available options and competition in K-12 education, thereby improving the quality of public schools.