AEA President Carol B. Fleming Statement on House Passage of Unvetted Voucher Bill Lawmakers continue to ignore calls to slow down extreme bill or answer questions about potential negative impacts on children

CONTACT: Liz Picone, Arkansas Education Association


Little Rock, ARKANSAS — Today the House passed SB294, the sweeping voucher reform bill introduced by Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders little more than two weeks ago.

Despite calls from educators, parents, disability advocates and others to slow down and answer questions about the bill’s negative impact on students, public schools, educators and families, the legislators continue to move the bill towards passage at breakneck speed.

Speech-language pathologist, twin mom, and Arkansas Education Association President Carol B. Fleming released the following statement in response:

“The voices of hundreds of educators, parents, disability advocates and others have been ignored by those who represent us. Despite pleas to our legislators to slow down and answer questions about the negative impact this bill could have on our children, it continues its sprint through the capital.

“The best decisions for our students are made with teachers and parents at the table. Educators have spent countless hours combing through the bill’s 144 pages and each time we come away with more questions than answers. At every turn, our requests to meet with the governor or the bill’s authors have been ignored or deflected.  

“If supporters of the bill are so confident about it, why are they trying to push it through so quickly without meaningful discussions? What are they afraid of and what’s in there that they don’t want us to know?”