Brief Update on the EdChoice Voucher Lawsuit in the May Newsletter of Ohio Retired Teachers Association (ORTA)
The attached article appears in the May ORTA Newsletter. The article provides some basic information about the lawsuit but doesn’t delve into the damage a universal voucher system will inflict on STRS. A retiree posed the question of how do vouchers affect retired teachers?
For every dollar districts in Ohio spend, at least 12 cents ends up in STRS. (This is a very conservative estimate) A universal EdChoice voucher system could remove up to an additional $2 billion from the K12 basic aid line item in the state budget immediately; hence $240,000,000 would be lost to STRS each year.
May Newsletter
Keeping ORTA members apprised of happenings and events
ORTA Publications | May 25, 2022
Update on EdChoice Lawsuit
A Message from Bill Phillis at the Coalition for Equity and Adequacy
The challenge to the constitutionality of the EdChoice voucher program was filed on January 4, 2022 in the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas by the Ohio Coalition for Equity and Adequacy of School Funding on behalf of over 200 school districts. Three days later a Koch Brothers bankrolled group, Institute for Justice, filed a motion to intervene. A couple weeks later the Catholic Families Applicants fled another motion to intervene.
Legal counsel Mark Wallach of the Walter|Haverfield law firm, on behalf of the school districts, filed a motion to oppose intervening. Judge Jaiza Page heard the matter on March 31 and rendered a decision on May 12, 2022. In layperson’s terms, the judge’s decision allows limited intervening, but undue delays in the case will not be allowed. This is not a setback for the plaintiff districts.
On May 18, 2022 the State defendants filed a motion to dismiss the case. On May 19 Notre Dame Law School Religious Liberty Initiative filed an amicus brief in support of the state’s motion to dismiss.
All of the above-mentioned proceedings are normal and thus not surprising. We are pleased the way the case is proceeding and are optimistic that the outcome will be a huge plus for public school districts and retired teachers.
We have an all-star Steering Committee for the Coalition; an attorney with 46 years of litigation experience; competent expert witnesses, including University of South Carolina law professor Derek Black, author of School House Burning; and the premier PR firm, Precision New Media.
Although a significant number of school districts in Ohio have joined the litigation effort, it is imperative that all districts in Ohio become involved. Check the Vouchers Hurt Ohio website for a whole array of information. Encourage the board of education in your district of residence to join in this effort.
You may contact William L. Phillis at 614.332.2886 (mobile) or if you have any questions or comments.
Learn more about the EdChoice voucher litigation