Education leaders say GOP 'bushwhacked' them

Phillip Rawls, Associated Press
Associated Press

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- The Republican governor and legislative leaders in Alabama ran over their education allies when they pushed through legislation providing state tax credits for attending private schools.

Republicans in the Legislature added the credits to a school flexibility bill and passed it along party lines Thursday night.

State school Superintendent Tommy Bice says he wasn't consulted about the changes and the bill wasn't what he had agreed to support. The executive director of the Alabama Association of School Boards, Sally Howell, says she was "bushwhacked."

The director of the School Superintendents of Alabama, Eric Mackey, says bridges will have to be rebuilt.

Gov. Robert Bentley and other Republicans said the tactics were worth passing a bill that will give hope to the parents of students stuck in failing public schools.