Voucher plan passes State Senate

The Louisiana State Senate Wednesday passed a voucher program for Louisiana's public education students by a vote of 24 to 15.

The legislation establishes a school choice program which would allow students in failing public schools to use vouchers to try to enroll in private and charter schools.

The senate made several amendments to the voucher bill which means it must now go back to the House of a Representatives for a vote there.

The voucher proposal is part of a major overhaul of Louisiana's public education system being pushed by Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal.

Some private schools in the state have already indicated they do not plan to participate in a voucher program.

Backers of the bill acknowledge that, due to school capacity issues, only a very small number students would initially be granted vouchers.

Earlier in the day, the Senate also passed Jindal's plan to get rid of the statewide teacher pay scale and a plan to make it tougher for teachers to get the job protection known as tenure.  That measure also heads back to the House for a vote.

Copyright 2012 KPLC. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.