News Release: To Provide Michigan Families with Greater Educational Options, MCC Urges Gov. Whitmer to Sign ESA Legislation

A smiling student embracing her family, surrounded by other students and families on her graduation day during the COVID-19 pandemic.

October 27, 2021

(Lansing, Mich.) — Michigan Catholic Conference is urging Governor Gretchen Whitmer to sign into law legislation that would assist parents and students by allowing for the creation of Educational Savings Accounts. According to legislation that has passed both the Senate and House of Representatives, each student in Michigan would have access to financial resources for use toward qualified expenses in either a public or nonpublic school setting. The bill package allocates up to $500 million from the state’s General Fund, rather than the resources coming from the state School Aid Budget. The following comments may be attributed to Tom Hickson, MCC Vice President for Public Policy and Advocacy:

“While this legislation was introduced and acted upon quickly, MCC has now had the opportunity to evaluate the bills and is offering its support. The legislation will provide parents with greater tools to ensure academic success for their children regardless of the educational setting, represents an important and meaningful policy change, and is a step forward toward helping Michigan catch up to dozens of other states — including almost every state in the Midwest — that are much further along in offering school choice options to parents. In the Catholic tradition, parents are the primary educators and have the right to determine which school is best for their children. We commend the leadership of the Michigan Legislature for passing these bills and encourage the Governor to sign them into law, thereby providing parents with an important tool to help toward their children’s educational success.”

The bills that have been passed by both the State Senate and House of Representatives and soon will be sent to the governor include House Bills 5404 and 5405, sponsored respectively by Representatives Bryan Posthumus (R-Cannon Twp.) and Phil Green (R-Millington). Senate Bills 687 and 688 are sponsored by Senators Tom Barrett (R-Charlotte) and Lana Theis (R-Brighton).

Michigan Catholic Conference is the official public policy voice of the Catholic Church in this state.

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