Summary: H.R.2556 — 108th Congress (2003-2004)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for H.R.2556. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Introduced in House (06/23/2003)

DC Parental Choice Incentive Act of 2003 - Directs the Secretary of Education to award competitive grants to eligible entities to provide students from low-income families in the District of Columbia (DC) with scholarships to enable them to attend the DC private elementary or secondary school of their choice.

Requires priority to be given to applications from eligible entities which will most effectively: (1) give priority to eligible students who attend an elementary or secondary school identified for improvement, corrective action, or restructuring under specified provisions of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965; (2) target resources to students and families that lack the financial resources to take advantage of available educational options; (3) provide students and families with the widest range of educational options; and (4) serve students of varying age and grade levels. Makes DC public educational entities, or nonprofit organizations and consortia, eligible to apply for such grants. Allows award of a single grant or multiple grants for up to five years.

Allows scholarship payments to parents in varying amounts according to need, up to $7,500, to cover costs of tuition, fees, and transportation expenses. Requires scholarships to be considered assistance to the student, not to the school, and to be treated as parental income.

Allows a parent to choose, and a school to offer, a single-sex school, class, or activity. Allows religiously affiliated schools to participate in the program and use funds made available under this Act: (1) for religious education purposes; and (2) to employ persons of the same religion. Allows such a school to: (1) take sex into account consistent with its religious tenets or beliefs; (2) have religious art, icons, scriptures, or other symbols in the school, religious terms in its name, and religious references in its mission statements and other chartering or governing documents; and (3) select its board members on a religious basis.

Requires each school that chooses to participate in the program to accept participating eligible students: (1) on a first-come, first-served basis; or (2) if the school cannot accommodate all such students that seek admission, through a random selection process.