In Louisiana, there's a new voucher system to help poor kids get out of failing schools. Students who come from households with income below 250 percent of the poverty line who are enrolled in public schools that have been rated C, D, or F by the state accountability system are eligible for a Student Scholarship for Educational Excellence—a voucher they can apply toward tuition at a private school of their choice.
In other words, the state is offering vouchers to kids who have been well and truly screwed by the system.
Needless to say, the teachers unions aren't thrilled about the prospect of kids bailing out of schools under union control and taking their funding with them. The union sued, but on July 10, a Baton Rouge court refused to stop the law from going into effect, so the teachers union launched Plan B: Bully private schools by sending them threatening legal letters, so that they will be afraid to accept students bearing the new vouchers. The union's lawyers, Blackwell & Associates, sent out nastygrams to 95 private schools. Here's some sample text from the letters, which were sent out last week.
The letter referenced in the text above is a notification to the state superintendent of school notifying him that parents trying to enroll their kids in a private school using the voucher will be refused.
School choice champion Clint Bolick, Vice President for Litigation at the Goldwater Institute in Arizona sums up the outrageousness of this tactic nicely:
In over two decades of school choice advocacy, I’ve never seen thuggery of this magnitude. What the unions can’t accomplish in the courtroom, they’re trying to achieve through bullying schools whose only offense is offering educational opportunities to children who need them.