South Carolina governor signs school vouchers into law

Published: May. 4, 2023 at 1:59 PM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) - A new program is now in effect in South Carolina that Republican leaders are calling transformative and monumental for education.

On Thursday, Gov. Henry McMaster signed the state’s first school voucher program into law.

It creates “Education Scholarship Accounts” – and will give up to 15-thousand students six-thousand dollars a year to spend on private school tuition and other related costs.

A family of four making around 120-thousand dollars a year would qualify.


Students will be able to receive this money – starting with the 2024-2025 school year.

“This is a day for celebration,” said Sen. Greg Hembree, Education Committee chairman. “There’s no doubt about that. But I would also say that we’re not finished. We are far, far, far from finished. This is a great tool to have, a great option for parents and students to have in South Carolina. There are other ones coming, and we need to continue to improve.”

Lawsuits are expected to be filed soon – challenging the program’s legality.

The state constitution prohibits public money from directly going to private schools – but Republicans say they’re confident this will hold up because it involves *indirect payments.