An education bill sponsored by state Sen. Elizabeth Benacquisto, R-Wellington, that would allow students from low-performing schools to enroll in high-performing schools is making its way through the state legislature.

The Miami Herald reported on Wednesday:

A school voucher program created by former Gov. Jeb Bush is set to grow under a bill making its way through the state Legislature.

Thousands of previously ineligible students would be able to move from struggling public schools to higher-performing ones in any school district — even if they don’t live there — as long as the district has available space. The students would be allowed to stay in their adopted districts until they graduate.

The Herald explains the bill expands the Opportunity Scholarship Program, that counts among its supporters Gov. Rick Scott, the education department and Bush’s education foundation.

The bill would eliminate all Opportunity Scholarship Program private school eligibility benefits. The Florida Supreme Court declared in 2006 that the private school option of the Scholarship Program was unconstitutional.

According to the Herald the bill brings up long-disputed issues: Detractors say if students leave struggling schools in droves there would be less funding, while supporters say measures are in place to help turn around chronically ailing schools.

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