Will you join parents, teachers, students, community organizations and elected officials to take a stand for HISD by signing this resolution opposing state takeover of HISD [bit.ly/nostatetakeover] and against the muzzling of the democratic process?
Everyone who is an elected official and everyone who cares about democracy should feel grave discomfort with the TEA power grab because it threatens all future elections.
We invite you to sign the resolution against state takeover of HISD along with the Houston Federation of Teachers (HFT), Texas Gulf Coast AFL-CIO, Service Employees International Union (SEIU), Houston GLBT Caucus, United We Dream, ROADwomen,, Texas Coalition of Black Democrats -Harris County, Harris County Tejano Dems, Community Voices for Public Education (CVPE), Texans for Special Education Reform (TxSER), HISD Parents for Inclusion (HPI), Houston Stonewall Young Democrats, Meyerland Democrats, East Houston Democrats, Sharpstown Dems and others. Elected Officials include HCDE Trustee Danyahel Norris, former HCDE Trustee Erica Lee Carter, HCC Trustee Carolyn Evans Shabazz, HCC Trustee Zeph Capo, Dem PCT 525 Chair Vincent Sanders, Dem PCT 134 Chair Antonio Maldonado, Dem PCT 183 Chair Rebecca Shukla, Dem PCT 205 Chair Lenora Sorola-Pohlman, Dem PCT 234 Chair Adoneca Fortier, Dem PCT 293 Chair Jane Lesnick, Dem PCT 311 Chair William Martin, Dem PCT 312 Chair Michelle Palmer, Dem PCT 559 Chair Lashelle Scott, Dem PCT 625 Chair Cheryl Novak, Dem PCT 804 Chair Amaury Mercado, Dem PCT 899 Chair, AJ Durrani, Dem PCT 902 Chair Tarah Taylor, Senate District 17 Democratic Chair Aliza Geretz in formation.
The state has no business taking our vote and voice away and if it does, our whole democracy is up for grabs. If the state takes over, our elected trustees will be replaced by an appointed board of managers with no accountability to the voters.
This HB 1842 initiated takeover would be based on the performance of just 1.4% of HISD schools and would be the first in the country due solely to standardized test scores. And all this, when HISD has a good academic B rating by TEA, higher than Dallas.
And were the state to try to take over HISD based on its on-going “investigations”, we need to remind TEA it is like the pot calling the kettle black. Last fall, TEA received an F grade from state auditors because it failed to follow its own rules of hiring and managing its vendors.
We must oppose TEA's the slash and burn takeover/turnaround programs that have failed over and over again. We need to fight for programs that increase equity and access that truly counter the consequences of concentrated poverty.
While our school board may be problematic, it is OUR problem to fix through the electoral process. Can we count on you to stand with your fellow Houstonians?
What can we expect if the state takes over HISD?
An appointed board of managers can roll back ground gained like community schools, protections for children and restorative justice practices in the blink of an eye.
A board of managers could start using STAAR scores to evaluate teachers again despite the fact that standardized test scores have less than 10% correlation to teacher quality.
A state takeover would lead to irreversible and discriminatory chartering of schools in Black and Brown communities, reducing equity and access for the most disenfranchised students.
A TEA appointed board of managers is ill-suited to manage HISD after TEA has failed for years to serve the needs of the state’s students with disabilities.
The board of managers will be appointed by Governor Abbott and TEA Commissioner Morath and will reflect their anti-public education agenda.
Oppose state takeover. Sign the resolution against state takeover.