Houston Education Leaders Call on Legislature to Properly Fund Schools

Presidents of school board and teachers’ union join HISD parent to ask for adequate education funding

June 06, 2011

With Texas lawmakers gathered in Austin to adopt a school finance plan for the next two years, Houston education advocates came together on June 6 to call for adequate funding of public education.

The school finance proposal currently being given the most consideration by the Texas Legislature would eliminate $4 billion in annual statewide education funding. Under that plan, Houston Independent School District classrooms would absorb a $78 million funding cut for the 2011–2012 school year and a $127 million cut in 2012–2013.

In addition, lawmakers are talking about no longer treating education as a non-negotiable priority and ending the long-standing practice of doing whatever it takes to fund schools at a pre-determined level designed to provide children with an adequate education.

Paula Harris, president of the HISD Board of Education, called on lawmakers to stand up for children and recognize that education is too important to Texas’ future to consider cutting.

“It is time for state lawmakers to roll up their sleeves and hammer out a sustainable, fair mechanism for adequately funding education in a way that reflects this state’s priorities,” Harris said at a press conference held June 6 at Pin Oak Middle School. Read the full press release (.pdf).

Mouseover the links below to meet some of the people who attended the press conference and read what they have to say about the proposed cuts to public education.

Rhonda Jones
Parent, Oak Forest Elementary

Sue Deigaard
Parent, Twain Elementary

Andy Chan
Parent, Pin Oak Middle School and West University Elementary

Laura Lomax Bream
Parent, Harvard Elementary

Deitra Kendrick
Teacher, Pin Oak Middle School