Thursday, July 31, 2014

North Carolina Can Distribute School Voucher Funds Ahead of Hearing Challenging the Program

A state trial court judge in North Carolina has refused to issue an injunction to prevent the State Educational Assistance Authority from distributing $10 million under a state school voucher plan while a challenge to it is pending. The 2400 students who will receive funds from the oversubscribed program were chosen by a lottery. According to the Raleigh News & Observer, the state moved up by a month the date for distributing funds under the Opportunity Scholarship program to beat any ruling by the court.  The distribution is scheduled for Aug. 15, while a hearing on the challenge to the voucher law is set for Aug. 19.  In February, the trial court had issued a temporary injunction to prevent the voucher program from taking effect while the challenge was being litigated. The state Supreme Court in May stayed the trial court's temporary injunction to permit the lottery to move ahead.  At that time, however, the trial court hearing on the challenge was scheduled to take place before the actual distribution date for funds. (See prior posting.)