Roses Used As Weapons in Pa. Voucher Battle

Wednesday, 07 Dec 2011 04:31 AM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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Advocates armed with white roses lobbied Pennsylvania legislators Tuesday, urging them to pass legislation allowing students to attend alternative schools.

The roses represented incidents of violence in the state’s lowest-performing schools, the supporters told the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, saying passing voucher laws would rescue students from schools where they are unable to learn.
“When the rates of violence are higher than the rates of proficiency, Harrisburg, we have a problem,” said Jay Ostrich, a spokesman for the Commonwealth Foundation, a conservative group aimed at free market ideas.
The state senate has already passed voucher legislation, but the House has yet to consider the bill, which advocates say they’d like to see completed before year’s end.
Republican Rep. Jim Christiana, who has proposed his own program, said he is “very optimistic” that the House could vote on the bill during the last few remaining session days. Gov. Tom Corbett is in favor of school vouchers and has said he will sign the bill if it passes the House.

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