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An Education Savings Account Gives This Mom a Lifeline For Her Special-Needs Daughter

Sometimes public policy can seem abstract and theoretical. Sometimes it’s hard to connect the dots between the decisions state lawmakers make, and the impact those decisions have on average people — on you and me. But on Monday, that connection was front and center at Locke’s Shaftesbury Society panel discussion about North Carolina’s education savings account program (ESA).

We gathered to talk about ESAs and the results researcher Jonathan Butcher found when he analyzed the first two years of the program and compared it to how ESAs are used in other states. With an account in North Carolina, the state deposits a portion of a child’s K-12 education spending from the state formula in a private account that parents use to buy education products and services.

We were fortunate to be joined by Elizabeth Bradford, whose daughter Libby has profound special needs. We’re grateful to Liz for helping us understand why ESAs aren’t abstract at all. In fact, they are incredibly personal.

Click below to learn about Libby’s journey.

Donna Martinez / Senior Writer and Editor

Donna came to the John Locke Foundation in January 2003 after freelance writing for Carolina Journal and contributing to projects for the North Carolina Education Alliance. He...