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Lawsuit Over EdChoice Vouchers Thrown Out By Ohio Supreme Court

A girl writing in a notebook in front of a tablet.
Julia M. Cameron

The Ohio Supreme Court has unanimously dismissed a lawsuit over the expansion of the state’s taxpayer paid private school voucher program, saying a law that changed the program made the suit pointless.

The EdChoice voucher program for kids in "failing" schools was set to explode from 517 school buildings to 1,200, based on new report card criteria. Education leaders say that could blow holes in most of the state's public school districts, which are required to pay for those vouchers.

But a coronavirus relief bill passed by the Ohio legislature in March froze the current EdChoice school list at 517, so the court ruled the lawsuit is moot.

Aaron Baer from the conservative group Citizens for Community Values sued on behalf of families he says were promised those expanded vouchers when the application window opened in February. However, the state legislature delayed that window until April.

“So much time has passed because you sat on your hands," Baer said. "Justice delayed is justice denied."

Those who had EdChoice vouchers will keep them, and the law passed in March allows vouchers for siblings, incoming kindergarten students and students going into high school.