The rumor that is circulating is that the collective bargaining bill is somehow tied to education vouchers or “school choice” — meaning that if a student in a northwest Iowa district decided to go to a private school, that the tax money tied to this student would follow the student to the school of their choice rather than go to the school district in which the student lives.
Independent Iowa District 1 State Senator David Johnson says this is not connected to the collective bargaining bill, but it is a concern of his.
He says lawmakers did pass a 1.11 percent increase in funding for state schools. Johnson and the Democrats say that was not enough. Johnson says there was no provision for vouchers or “school choice” in that bill either, but he says maybe the GOP is gearing up for such a bill.
Johnson tells us why he voted against the 1.11 percent increase in school funding.
And Johnson says that extra money may be used to start a voucher or education savings account program.
Johnson says he thinks public and private schools should continue and expand collaboration between the two kinds of schools.
He says he thinks as a general rule, lawmakers have to be more open.
Johnson serves Lyon, Osceola, Clay and Dickinson counties in northwest Iowa.