Tax Credit Scholarship Programs and the Changing Ecology of Public Education

44 Pages Posted: 4 Apr 2013 Last revised: 2 Oct 2015

See all articles by Hillel Y. Levin

Hillel Y. Levin

University of Georgia School of Law

Date Written: April 3, 2013


The traditional model of public education continues to be challenged by advocates of school choice. Typically associated with charter schools, magnet schools, and tuition voucher programs, these advocates have recently introduced a new school choice plan, namely tax credit scholarship programs. More than a dozen states have adopted such programs, and hundreds of millions of dollars are now diverted each year from public programs to private schools. These programs are poorly-understood and under-studied by legal scholars. This Article assesses the place of these programs within the ecology of public education, considers the fundamentally different approaches states have taken to these programs, identifies some critical questions and problems with them, and proposes a set of best practices for states to follow in designing and implementing them.

The Companion Article for this paper are available at the following URL:

Keywords: education, school choice, charter schools, magnet schools, voucher, tax credit, scholarship, public education, public schools, private schools

JEL Classification: H52, I20, I21, I22, I28, I29, H2, H7, K34

Suggested Citation

Levin, Hillel Y., Tax Credit Scholarship Programs and the Changing Ecology of Public Education (April 3, 2013). 45 Arizona State Law Journal 1033 (2013)., UGA Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2013-29, Available at SSRN: or

Hillel Y. Levin (Contact Author)

University of Georgia School of Law ( email )

225 Herty Drive
Athens, GA 30602
United States

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