Tennessee Considers Bill Tying Welfare Benefits to Children’s Grades
Not to be outdone by a Kansas bill that would allow those who are HIV positive to be separated from those who don’t, the state of Tennessee is considering a bill that would tie welfare support to a child’s progress in school.
The legislation would allow a family to lose up to 30% of its assistance if their child(ren) are not performing well in school:
Under the legislation brought by two Republicans, a student who doesn’t not make “satisfactory progress” in school would cost his or her family up to 30 percent of its welfare assistance, the Knoxville News and Sentinel reported:
The bill is sponsored by Sen. Stacey Campfield, R-Knoxville, and Rep. Vance Dennis, R-Savannah. It calls for a 30 percent reduction in Temporary Assistance for Needy Families benefits to parents whose children are not making satisfactory progress in school.
As amended, it would not apply when a child has a handicap or learning disability or when the parent takes steps to try improving the youngster’s school performance — such as signing up for a “parenting class,” arranging a tutoring program or attending a parent-teacher conference.
When Campfield introduced the legislation in January, he said parents have “gotten away with doing absolutely nothing to help their children” in school. “That’s child abuse to me,” he added. Tennessee already ties welfare to education by mandating a 20 percent cut in benefits if students do not meet attendance standards, but this change would place the burden of maintaining benefits squarely on children, who would face costing their family much-needed assistance if they don’t keep up in school.
Read more at thinkprogress.
This bill is criminally absurd and makes horrible assumptions about families on welfare and why–or why not–students perform the way they do in school.
Still, there will be many Tennessee constituents who wildly support this directive.
What do you think?
Sound off below!!!!