Oversight Committee Passes SOAR Act

March 10, 2011

Washington, D.C. – By a vote of 21-14 the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform voted to approve H.R. 471, the Scholarships for Opportunity and Results (SOAR) Act, one of Speaker John Boehner’s top legislative priorities. The legislation restores the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program, which was effectively killed in 2009 due to opposition from teachers unions and other political opponents. Committee chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) and D.C. subcommittee chairman Trey Gowdy (R-SC) are original co-sponsors. The D.C. subcommittee held a hearing on H.R. 471 and the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship on March 1st.

“Today’s vote continues the bipartisan momentum to restore educational choice and opportunity for schoolchildren in the District of Columbia,” said Chairman Issa. “Independent studies and reports from parents and students have validated the educational benefits the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program has provided to low-income D.C. students. Without the robust and steadfast opposition of teachers’ union special interest groups, I believe there would have been consensus of support for this commonsense proposal. ”

Senator Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) has introduced companion legislation (S. 206).

Click here for the text of H.R. 471 approved by the Oversight Committee today.

For additional background information, please see Speaker Boehner’s summary of the legislation.

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