Voucher Scholarship Program taking effect in SWLA

Voucher Program in SWLA

CALCASIEU PARISH, LA (KPLC) - Pieces of the Governor's education reform plan are beginning to take effect. The voucher scholarship program which would allow students to leave failing schools to go to private schools has begun.

Four schools in the Calcasieu area are participating in the voucher program: St. Theodore Holy Family in Moss Bluff, Our Lady's School in Sulphur, Eternity Christian Academy in Westlake and Beauver Christian Academy in DeRidder.

Principal of St. Theodore Holy Family Jennifer Bellon said she's excited to have the program at her school because not only will it help grow the school, but it will help provide educational opportunities to those students who need it.

"Most of what we're doing is really seeing if we can make a difference in some of these children's lives," Bellon said.

Bellon wants to give children from low performing schools a chance to get a quality education at her school and essentially any school that is accepting the voucher program.

"I think that as an educator that's what we need to do, is be able to help kids learn and that was really the bottom line," Bellon said. "They have to follow the same requirements as any other child. I feel like if they're going to come to Holy Families for example, then they're coming because they want to."

Bellon said parents should be allowed to send their child to a private school even if they can't afford it. And with the voucher scholarship program, parents have the chance to do just that.

"I just feel if we don't open our schools to be more diverse population, then we're not doing what we're supposed to be doing as far as educating children and that is really my goal," she said.

Applications to private schools in the area with the new voucher scholarship program will be accepted starting June 1.

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