- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 31, 2015

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - A bill to create school vouchers for a small percentage of special-education students is headed to Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant, who plans to sign it.

The Senate passed the final version of Senate Bill 2695 last week, but it was held for the possibility of more debate.

Senators removed the procedural hold Tuesday without further discussion.

The bill would create $6,500-a-year vouchers for up to 500 special-education students the first year. The program would increase by 500 a year until it reaches 2,500 students. Money could go toward private school tuition, tutoring or therapy related to education.

Supporters said the vouchers would offer hope to children whose needs are not being met by public schools. Opponents said vouchers would help too few of Mississippi’s nearly 66,500 special-needs students.

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