Evaluating ESAs in the Volunteer State
JASON EDMONDS, RESEARCH ASSOCIATE at Beacon Center of Tennessee
A new research report shows that both Shelby County Schools and Metro Nashville Public Schools would save money if the Education Savings Account (ESA) program was implemented. The research shows that Shelby County schools would save over $2,000 for each student who chose to utilize the ESA while it would save Metro Nashville Schools over $500 for each student who used an ESA.
Beacon’s latest study on school choice in Tennessee is consistent with what we have seen in other states, that educational choice saves public schools money while giving parents more options. While educational choice detractors use scare tactics and unfounded claims that ESAs take money out of the educational system, nothing could be further from the truth. Not only does educational choice give students who leave better outcomes, but it also helps those children who stay. If Tennessee’s ESA program reached the capped 15,000 student limit, these two school districts would save a combined twenty-one million dollars a year.