Lieutenant Governor Dan Forest is promoting expanded school choice as part of his push to win the Republican nomination for governor in 2020. 

In a campaign video released on Wednesday, Forest says every North Carolina family, regardless of their income, should be eligible to receive a state-funded voucher to attend a private school.

The News and Observer reports a North Carolina scholarship program was established in 2013 that provided up to $4200 a year to help parents send their children to private schools. But those funds are earmarked for lower-to-middle income families.

Democratic Governor Roy Cooper has criticized the voucher program and resisted calls to increase school choice funding.

Forest says he'd like to see more money going directly to charter schools, which don't currently receive any funds to build or renovate facilities.

The lieutenant governor's platform also calls for armed security in schools, mandating background checks for teachers, and requiring students to pass a U.S. citizenship exam before graduation.

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