Group Claims Ohio School Districts Trying to Keep Qualifying Students in the Dark about Vouchers
Leaders of two Ohio school districts are allegedly misusing student privacy laws to prevent low-income families from discovering they qualify for a state-funded voucher that would allow their children to attend a high-quality private school.
Those allegations are at the heart of a new lawsuit filed by School Choice Ohio, an advocacy group that seeks to educate parents about their education options, according to Cincinnati.com.
Cincinnati Public Schools and Springfield City Schools are the two districts named in the lawsuit, which was filed with the Ohio Supreme Court on May 12.
According to School Choice Ohio leaders, the two districts have rebuffed their open records requests to get contact information for the families that qualify for a roughly $4,000-a-year private school voucher (or scholarship). They add that most school districts provide the requested contact information – which is a legal request under federal law – without any hassles.
Cincinnati school leaders justify their refusal to supply student names, addresses and phone numbers – known as “directory information” – by citing a law that allows school districts to set their own privacy policies over such information, according to Cincinnati.com.