One Fifth of DC School Vouchers Were Not Accounted For

October 9, 2009

Last year, the Federal government spent about $12 million on vouchers for children in the District of Columbia to attend public schools. Last week in Congress, Senator Durbin (D-IL) revealed that in his own private audit of the program, he found that he could find no record of 385 students, about 1/5 of the 1718 students in the program. Durbin originally asked for the enrollment information for the voucher program, but was denied access by the Washington Scholarship Fund, which oversees the program. Durbin then contacted the 49 schools that participate in the voucher program to count the number of students that had used the vouchers in the last year. When the data came in, the numbers did not match up.

 

The CEO of the Washington Scholarship Fund, Gregory Cork, stated that the records were withheld from the Senator due to confidentiality of the students’ information. He said that he would work with Durbin to resolve the discrepancies between the numbers. In the meantime, the question remains as to where federal tax dollars were spent if they were not used to educate children.

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