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AZ Senate approves expansion of state's school voucher program

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The Arizona Senate has approved a massive expansion of the state’s school voucher system.

Sen. Paul Boyer is the bill's Republican sponsor and says it is aimed at low-income students. But it also adds many wealthier parents to those who can use public money to pay for private schools.

The contentious proposal was approved on a 16-12 vote with no Democratic backing on Wednesday. It makes as many as 85% of the state’s 1.1 million public school students eligible for vouchers.

Opponents says it siphons money from public schools and that low-income families can't use vouchers even if they qualify. Supporters say vouchers let parents choose the schools that are best for their children.

Arizona voters overwhelmingly rejected universal vouchers in 2018.