Montana Quality Education Coalition v. Gianforte
In 2023, the Montana Legislature passed House Bill 393 (“HB 393”) to shake out Montanans’ public education piggy bank, authorizing private citizens to spend public school money on everything from private school transportation to SAT prep to college tuition. The bill sets up education savings accounts (“ESAs”) for parents of students with disabilities and begins by offering incentives for qualified students to leave or refrain from ever enrolling in public schools. ESAs will pull state funding directly from local public school accounts and inflate general fund budgets, leading to increased local property taxes.
While HB 393 provides no assurance that students with disabilities will receive the services and education they need, it assuredly provides that public schools will have fewer resources to serve their students, with and without disabilities.
On January 23rd, 2024, Montana Quality Education Coalition and Disability Rights Montana filed suit to permanently enjoin this law.
Filings / Press