News release issued by Madison City Schools:
MADISON, Ala. – The Madison City School Board has taken a strong position against the Alabama Accountability Act, issuing a resolution urging for a full repeal of the measure.
In unanimous consent, the board approved the resolution made by Madison City School Superintendent Dr. Dee Fowler.
“We feel this bill will do more harm to the state than good,” Dr. Fowler said shortly before the board vote.
The resolution noted that the Alabama Accountability Act, as originally introduced, was intended as a school flexibility bill to encourage school systems to be innovative and creative in hiring, curriculum and budget decisions.
The bill was heavily amended to include tax credits for families in failing school districts to apply toward private schools. Officials have estimated the tax credits could redirect up to $50 million from the Education Trust Fund budget, which could cost Madison an estimated $800,000. The ETF could see further hits under a provision that provides tax breaks for corporations that donate to a scholarship pool for students in failing school districts to use for private school.
The resolution said that the substantial amendments made the AAA “seriously detrimental” to Alabama public schools by imposing new burdens on local school system, siphoning millions of dollars to the support of private schools and “makes no provision at all for the improvement of failing schools.”
The resolution urges the Madison legislative delegation and other lawmakers to repeal the AAA in its entirety, or consider a lengthy list of amendments.