A Republican senator has called for allowing parents of children with disabilities to enroll their children in private schools if they want to.
The move could be seen as an attempt to woo more parents to adopt the American Dream, which is not easy for many parents with children with special needs.
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) told ABC News on Wednesday that he supports allowing parents to enroll the children in their homes as long as they meet certain criteria.
“Parents can choose whether or not they want their children to go to a private school, if they don’t have a lot of money, if there’s not a lot that they can do on their own, they can still go to the public school,” Paul said.
“But if they have a child who has a disability, or if they are struggling financially, or they are a parent of an intellectually disabled child, or you know, there’s a child in that situation who would prefer to go in a public school.
They can still do that, they just have to follow certain rules.”
Paul, a Republican, is one of a handful of GOP senators who are considering legislation that would allow parents to opt their children out of public school and in private for any reason.
In 2015, the Senate passed a bill allowing parents who had children with autism to enroll in private, non-religious schools, which was vetoed by President Barack Obama.
That same year, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that states could not prohibit private schools from providing accommodations for students with special education needs.
The ruling, known as the “Thomas More Law,” allowed parents who were unable to enroll a child’s child in a state’s public school because of a disability to do so privately.
Paul said the legislation he has introduced would allow private schools to provide the same type of accommodations to students with autism and intellectual disability.
“When it comes to a parent with a disability and they want a child to go into a private education, they are able to do that,” Paul told ABC’s This Week in a segment airing on Sunday.
“There are a lot more protections in the law, and that is what is the focus here.”
Paul’s legislation would allow for the creation of a federal agency that would create a registry of parents who want their disabled children enrolled in private or religious schools.
“I don’t know that there is a better way to do it than to do the federal government,” Paul added.