School Choice

Louisiana Voucher Program Gets Courtroom Setback

But the decision gives the program wiggle room, so expect it to survive

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NEW ORLEANS — Last January, Gov. Bobby Jindal took the oath of office for his second term, declaring in his inauguration speech that anyone who stood in the way of his education reform efforts "must stand down." On Friday, a judge in Baton Rouge said, in effect: not so fast.

Judge Timothy Kelley of State District Court ruled that the way in which the state finances its new voucher program violates the state Constitution, as it relies on money intended in "plain and unambiguous" terms solely for public schools.

In a statement, Governor Jindal called the decision "wrongheaded and a travesty for parents across Louisiana" and vowed to appeal. But it was not the crippling setback it could have been.