WASHINGTON — Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on Thursday pitched a $5 billion federal tax credit that would fund scholarships to private schools and other educational programs, throwing her weight behind what will be a difficult legislative undertaking to fund the Trump administration’s signature education initiative.
Ms. DeVos will join Republican lawmakers in championing legislation that would allow states to opt into a program that provides individual and corporate donors dollar-for-dollar tax credits for contributing to scholarship programs that help families pay private-school tuition and other educational expenses. The federal program mirrors those already operating in more than a dozen states, like Arizona and Florida, where money flows to nonprofit organizations that fund private-school vouchers for low-income students. But the program would also allow states the flexibility to fund other programs, like apprenticeship, dual enrollment, after-school and remedial programs.
In an announcement Thursday, Ms. DeVos called it a “bold” proposal that gives “hundreds of thousands of students across the country the power to find the right fit for their education.”
“The biggest winners will be America’s forgotten children, who will finally have choices previously available only for the rich, the powerful and the well-connected,” she said.