Parents Choose, Students Succeed

The Education Freedom Scholarship Act will empower Tennessee parents with the freedom to pick the right school for their child, while giving families a choice in where their taxpayer dollars are spent.

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Education has the power to change the trajectory of a child’s life, and every Tennessee child deserves to attend the school that fits their unique needs – regardless of income or zip code.

Opportunity For All

In the past five years, Tennessee has made great strides to strengthen education, but there’s more work to do to ensure that every child in our state has the opportunity to reach their full potential.

Education Freedom Scholarships will extend school choice to every family across rural and urban Tennessee, putting parents at the forefront of their child’s education so that students find the best school for their needs to succeed in the classroom and beyond.

School Choice Success

State and national trends make it clear that now is the time to bring education freedom to every Tennessee family, from climbing enrollment numbers in the ESA pilot program to widespread achievement and parent satisfaction nationwide.

Nationwide Success

31 states offer school choice programs, including 9 states that have adopted universal school choice.

Type Of School Choice Programs Offered By Each State

Parents Support

83% of parents favor school choice policies, and parents are more satisfied when they choose their child’s school.

Students Achieve

Studies show rising test scores and better educational attainment and life outcomes with education freedom.

Schools Win

Public school scores, student achievement, and funding grow – school choice is a rising tide that lifts all boats.


families have applied for the program


students are enrolled in participating non-public schools, with enrollment numbers continuing to rise


of parents are satisfied with the program

Hear From Tennesseans

Education Freedom Scholarship Act Explained

The Education Freedom Scholarship Act will establish a statewide school choice program
— available to all Tennessee families — over the next two years while prioritizing low-income students and students with disabilities.

  • 2024-25 School Year

    20,000 scholarships will be available to Tennessee students, including:

    • 10,000 scholarships for students who are at or below 300% of the federal poverty level, have a disability, or are eligible for the existing ESA pilot program
    • 10,000 additional scholarships available to a universal pool of students entitled to attend a public school
  • 2025-26 School Year & Beyond

    Universal eligibility for all Tennessee students entitled to attend a public school, prioritizing currently enrolled students, low-income and public school students if demand exceeds available funding.

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Strengthening Education for Every Tennessean

Some are concerned that more choices for families could mean fewer resources for public schools, but these two ideas are not in conflict. Tennessee can give parents choice while continuing to support public schools.

Our public schools are invaluable, and over the past five years, the Lee administration has invested historic amounts to strengthen public education.

Key Public Education Investments

  • We’ve increased annual investments in public education by more than $1.8 billion since 2019 – the most in Tennessee history
  • We modernized the way we fund public schools for the first time in 30 years, with the Tennessee Investment in Student Achievement (TISA) Act
  • In 2023, we gave teachers the largest pay raise in state history, putting Tennessee on track to be a top 10 state for starting teacher pay by the end of Governor Lee’s term

Tennessee has a responsibility to deliver a quality education for every child across our state, and our commitment to parents and students will continue with both strong public education investments and education freedom for every family.

Frequently Asked Questions