The state has no business taking our vote and voice away and if it does, our whole democracy is up for grabs.
WHEREAS the unrelenting threat of takeover has brought instability and uncertainty to HISD that negatively impacts the lives of students.
WHEREAS the Houston Independent School District Board of Trustees is a democratically elected body directly accountable to the voters.
WHEREAS the Texas Education Agency and its appointed board of managers would not be directly accountable to the voters.
WHEREAS children, teachers, parents, and communities will only have a voice as long as decision makers are accountable to them.
WHEREAS the state has a dismal record in taking over other school districts and has yet to prove it can effectively attend to its own responsibilities, much less those responsibilities delegated to local school boards.
WHEREAS, after demonstrating neglect for adequately serving the needs of the state’s Special Education students for years and recently indicating that it does not expect to be able to do so until June 2020, it is inconceivable that TEA can meet the needs of all students in HISD were it to take over HISD when it cannot even meet the needs of just one demographic--students with disabilities.
WHEREAS a state takeover by TEA would lead to irreversible and discriminatory chartering of schools in black and brown communities and would reduce equity and access for our most disenfranchised students including LGBTQiA students, immigrant students and students with disabilities. Furthermore, a state takeover and subsequent increase in charters in the greater Houston area would increase costs to taxpayers should these charters fail.
WHEREAS a state takeover would jeopardize due process rights for students and for parents, long enshrined in law and in HISD policy.
We are RESOLVED in our opposition to any efforts by the Texas Education Agency to take over the Houston Independent School District.
We invite you to sign the resolution against state takeover of HISD along with the Houston Federation of Teachers (HFT), Houston Educational Support Personnel (HESP), the Harris County Democratic Party, 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), Kashmere Feeder Pattern Community Council, Houston Stonewall Young Democrats, Meyerland Democrats, East Houston Democrats, Southwest Dems, Our Revolution, Promoters of Education, Awareness and Community Engagement, PAC for Progressive Texas Women, Students Need Libraries and others.
Elected Officials include Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, Congresswoman Sylvia Garcia, State Senator Carol Alvarado, State Senator John Whitmire, State Rep Alma Allen, State Rep Gina Calanni, State Rep Garnet Coleman, State Rep Jessica Farrar, State Rep Ana Hernandez, State Rep. Jarvis Johnson, State Rep Christina Morales, State Rep Mary Ann Perez, State Rep Ron Reynolds, State Rep Jon Rosenthal, State Rep Shawn Thierry, State Rep Senfronia Thompson,State Rep Hubert Vo, State Rep Armando Walle, State Rep Gene Wu, Sheriff Ed Gonzalez, Harris County Commissioner-Pct Two Adrian García, Houston City Councilmember Karla Cisneros, Houston City Councilmember Robert Gallegos, Harris County Democratic Party Chair Lillie Schechter, HCDE Trustee Danyahel Norris, former HCDE Trustee Erica Lee Carter, HCC Trustee Carolyn Evans Shabazz, HCC Trustee Zeph Capo, HCC Trustee Dr. Pretta VanDible Stallworth, HCC Trustee Adriana Tamez, 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 217 Chair David Feldwisch, Dem PCT 227 Chair Ingrid Bond, Dem PCT 234 Chair Adoneca Fortier, Dem PCT 272 Chair Daniel Cohen, Dem PCT 293 Chair Jane Lesnick, Dem PCT 311 Chair William Martin, Dem PCT 312 Chair Michelle Palmer, Dem PCT 323 Chair Gary West, Dem PCT 434 Chair Leslie Karpas, 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.