Senator believes scholarship program will be experiment on African-Americans

Senator believes scholarship program will be experiment on African-Americans
The same guidelines that qualify students for a free or reduced-price meal under the National School Lunch Act would be used to pick eligible students for the program. (Source: Pixabay)

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Some Arkansas lawmakers worry about the intent behind a bill focusing on low-income families and private schools.

The republican senator serves the Corning area.
The republican senator serves the Corning area. (Source: DixieKnightPhotography)

Arkansas State Senator Blake Johnson of Corning is Senate Bill 620′s lead sponsor which would award scholarships to students who come from low-income families to allow them to attend public institutions in Pulaski County. It would include students from kindergarten all the way to higher education.

The same guidelines that qualify students for a free or reduced-price meal under the National School Lunch Act would be used to pick eligible students for the program.

Lawmakers describe the 'Capital Promise Scholarship' as a $3.5 million demonstration project to promote student achievement in those families.

However, Democrats like Senator Joyce Elliott believe it is an experiment on African-American children.

Sen. Elliott told ABC-affiliate KATV said we’ve seen these types of projects in the past.

“If you know anything about the experiments that were done on black bodies in Alabama, and the experiments that have been done over the years on black bodies because somebody in a high place decided it was a great idea, you might understand why we are so outraged about this...all of which were relayed to the governor,” Sen. Elliott said.

Click here for details on why Governor Asa Hutchinson supports the bill.

Copyright 2019 KAIT. KATV contributed to this report. All rights reserved.