Indiana Legislature: Support HB 1169 to eliminate textbook fees for public school students
This petition had 7,257 supporters
Indiana is one of a handful of states that do not fund the cost of textbooks for public school districts. Instead, our state encourages districts to pass the costs along to families and to pursue debt collection if families are unwilling or unable to pay. Families who receive free or reduced lunch can qualify for textbook assistance, but money is tight for many families who do not meet the cutoff.
The costs are considerable, anywhere between $100 to $200 per student, depending on the district and the grade level. (Wealthier districts are likely to charge and provide more—another avenue for disparities in the academic experience to creep into our schools.)
Private school parents and homeschoolers in Indiana can write off school supplies and textbooks when they file their taxes, but not parents of children in Indiana's public schools.
Textbooks are not a frill. They are an essential aspect of the curriculum. It's time for Indiana to step up and fully fund public education.
We call on Indiana’s legislators and governor to support House Bill 1169, which would require public schools to provide curricular materials at no cost to students, and which would establish a fund and appropriations for state reimbursement of public schools’ curricular costs.
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