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On his way out, Carlos Curbelo wants Miami-Dade school board to oppose voucher lawsuit


Carlos Curbelo has lobbed a politically-charged parting gift at his fellow school board members.

Before the newly-elected congressman heads to Washington D.C., Curbelo wants the board to take a symbolic stance against a lawsuit attacking Florida's school voucher system.

Curbelo has proposed a resolution to be taken up at Wednesday’s regular school board meeting, in all likelihood his last.

"It's never a bad time to do the right thing. And the board, whether it's my last meeting or not, should have the courage to at the very least discuss this issue," Curbelo said. "This is a major education policy question."

The voucher program, called the Tax Credit Scholarship, divides constituencies that typically find themselves on the same side of issues.

Black religious leaders rely on the program to run parochial schools, and most of the scholarship recipients are minorities. But the NAACP is one of the groups suing the state. Meanwhile, Republicans like Curbelo tend to support the program, which gives tax credits to businesses that donate money for it.

In August, the statewide teachers union, Florida school boards association and PTA sued the governor over the voucher program. They claim the program is unconstitutional because it sucks money out of public schools and goes largely to religious institutions.