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Amendment Could Re-Authorize D.C. Voucher Program

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By Sara Sciammacco

Some senators are reviving their efforts to save a program that helps D.C.'s low-income kids go to private school. Opponents have argued the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship program is ineffective and steers away money from public schools.

Senators, like Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), want Congress to continue funding the program after it expires this year. But President Obama says the federal government won't pay for any new students. Lieberman says he's adding a five-year re-authorization amendment to a bill that's moving in the Senate.

"In many cases this program has not only changed lives, I believe it has saved lives. Yet powerful interests are determined to end this relatively small program, when you think about the millions of dollars we are talking about here," says Lieberman.

The voucher program, which is slated to cost more than $9 million in 2011, gives low-income kids up to $7,500 in scholarships.

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