The Houston Chronicle published an article on Wednesday and the state will announce preliminary accountability ratings on Thursday, August 15. It is projected that HISD will have an overall B+ rating
Even if a state takeover may be all but certain, we must oppose this assault on democracy and local control.
This is about politics and power, not students nor learning.
Make no mistake. This investigation was released in a carefully orchestrated bloodless coup designed to replace our democratically elected school board with an unelected and unaccountable token school board.
The conclusion was pre- determined before the investigation even began. Not one of us would have emerged smelling like a rose in a witch hunt of this sort.
How much of this investigation is true? And if parts are true, what would be the appropriate and normal sanctions? Is the nuclear option best for our kids?
It is voters- not TEA-who are authorized to hold our board accountable in school board elections. We lose our vote and our voice if TEA uses this sham investigation and House Bill 1842 as its cover to dismantle our democracy.
Again, it will be our kids and students who suffer if the takeover happens.
Come to the CVPE community meeting on Aug 14 at 6:30 pm at MECA, 1900 Kane Street for a discussion to understand the accountability ratings, strengths and limitations of the investigation and what state takeover has meant for other school districts.
We will begin the work to protect our students and communities and to build a list of questions for the Texas Education Agency and their shadow takeover partner, the Greater Houston Partnership (GHP).
We must demand answers from TEA and GHP.
- What makes anyone think the state would do a better job?
- Will poor Black and Brown kids be better served by TEA?
- If TEA is planning to take over, is the November school board election a sham?
- Will the voice of the public and parents be heard with a board of managers?
- The Greater Houston Partnership (GHP) and TEA appear to be working together to appoint a business-friendly token board. Will this sham board return to the failed policies of the Grier administration- closing schools in Black and Brown neighborhoods, using STAAR scores to evaluate teachers and increase the time spent on STAAR prep at the expense of meaningful instruction?
- Will these unelected and unaccountable board members be paid?
- Will wraparound services continue in HISD?
- Will TEA protect students from ICE Raids in our schools?
- Where has the Greater Houston Partnership been the last 30 years? Why do they think that they are now the experts on public education?
- Since there is increasing public opposition to high stakes testing why should we let the state use STAAR scores to disenfranchise Houstonians?
If we do not speak out, it is our kids and communities that will suffer.