I am going to keep this update short. When I asked you to email your state legislators that public school educators did not want vouchers, you answered the call. In addition, when Dallas ISD joined school districts all over Texas to sound the alarm on school funding, nearly 10,000 emails were sent to lawmakers. Thank you.
The good news is that enough state representatives heard us, and a voucher bill has yet to make it onto the floor of the Texas House.
The bad news is that the Texas Senate is holding any new public school funding contingent on voucher approval. They are so singularly focused on trying to get a voucher bill passed that they are not providing any new public school funding—which hasn’t been increased since 2019. That means we will continue to struggle with providing the significant pay increase you deserve just to keep up with inflation.
There is still time for lawmakers to act: The state has a surplus of $32.7 billion. Click here to tell legislative leaders that increasing pay for teachers and everyone else working in public schools is just as important as cutting property taxes. They can do both!
PS-The House passed a property tax relief bill yesterday. Dollars spent on property-tax relief are not investments in public education. Those dollars do not reach classrooms and they do not give districts more money to pay you and meet other needs. It would be disingenuous for any legislator to claim that a vote for property-tax relief is a vote to increase funding for Texas classrooms.