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Coalition launches campaign to defeat private education ballot petition drive

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos
Andrew Harnik
U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos

A coalition of public education supporters has kicked off a new campaign. They want to stop a ballot proposal backed by former U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.

The ballot proposal would set up a scholarship program that could help families pay for private school.

And it would create tax credits for individuals and companies that contribute to the program.

The coalition says the proposal would drain hundreds of millions of dollars away from Michigan public schools.

Arlyssa Heard is a parent of a child in special education in Detroit Schools.

“Private schools just simply don't have to accept a student who comes knocking at their door. However, public schools do. They can't pick and choose who to educate,” Heard said.

The coalition wants voters to decline to sign the ballot initiative.

A spokesman for the petition drive disputes that the proposal will take money away from public schools.

Virginia Gordan