Can you speak at the HISD School Board meeting this Thursday evening?
Your voice is important. You can tell your story about-
- The importance of teaching accurate historical facts and your opposition to the false anti-CRT narrative that the right is using to demonize public education.
- Equity and transparency issues regarding the budget released so far and the importance of ensuring small class size for our students
- The continuing over-reliance on standardized testing
It was no accident that over 40 hostile individuals spoke out against masks, and for banning books at last month’s board meeting. They are part of an organized right-wing movement designed to go after public education.
The rightwing School Board Watchlist (SBWL) states it is “dedicated to protecting our children by exposing radical and false ideologies endorsed by school boards and pushed in the classroom.” The Tea Party Patriots School Board Guide advocates censorship, opposing democratically elected school boards, and opposing the teaching of accurate historical facts. They describe rank and file teachers and school board members as “radical activists who want to use your kids for their own political purposes to implement critical race theory and ‘bad curriculum’.”
These efforts are part of a calculated plan to distract people from the real work needed to improve public education for all of our children. That works include how we fund our schools. As such, your input regarding HISD’s first budget workshop last Thursday is also important. Here is a link to the workshop video and to the workshop powerpoint.
On the plus side, at the budget workshop last week, HISD Administration held a substantive conversation about raising teacher salaries so that HISD is competitive with surrounding districts. However, there was no significant explanation of how these raises would be funded.
As a matter of fact, principals know more about the possible budget cuts (frozen school budgets and associated class size issues, frozen hiring at both the school and the district level, more centralized budget decisions) than our democratically elected school board does.
Transparency is important. The board is elected to represent us, the public, and both the public and the board must have information available to them. Kicking the can down the road by stating “hard decisions have to be made in the future” is not a budget plan. When things are done in the dark, students suffer.
Can you sign up here to speak at the board meeting on Thursday? Sign up by noon on Wednesday for the Thursday, March 10th, board meeting. You can speak in person or on zoom.
The maximum time is 2 minutes (300 words), but the board president may reduce speakers' time to one minute (150 words) if there are a large number of registered speakers. Speakers to agenda items (Thursday’s agenda here) speak at the beginning of a board meeting at around 5 pm and speakers for the hearing of citizens (HOC) speak no later than 7 pm. If you need assistance or more information, email [email protected].
Attend the board meeting, speak at the board meeting or watch the livestream.
We are all partners in this work to ensure that our public schools are the cornerstone of a thriving democracy. Thank you for getting more involved.
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