Nevada high court blocks funding for school choice program

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The Nevada Supreme Court has ruled that the state's voucher-style Education Savings Accounts program — seen as the broadest school choice initiative in the country — has an unconstitutional funding mechanism that should remain blocked.

Justices issued a ruling on Thursday against the money source for the program — which has been on hold since the winter and never disbursed funds to families as it intended — but upholding some of the major tenets underlying the school voucher concept.

Parties on both sides of the hotly debated issue claimed victory, emphasizing different parts of the 35-page decision.

"The state was taken to its knees by a group of people that believe in public education," said Rory Reid, son of Democratic Sen. Harry Reid and president of the Rogers Foundation, which supported legal challenges against the program. "This is a tremendous victory."

Proponents framed the ruling as a "landmark win" for themselves, saying it affirmed some of their most fundamental arguments and adding that the program's defects can be fixed by the Legislature.

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