Features

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Bad Bills Headed for Hearings–Speak Out Against One Aiming to Silence You

Starting Friday, the Texas Senate will be holding rapid-fire hearings over three days in an effort to jam through a batch of bad proposals that have deservedly failed in past sessions. These include bills to enact private-school voucher subsidies (SB 2 on Friday in the Senate Education Committee) and to dictate discriminatory bathroom-use policies affecting […]

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Lieutenant Governor’s Proposals on School Finance, Teacher Pay Don’t Add Up

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick announced today a batch of proposals for the special session that he claimed would improve teacher pay and benefits while improving school funding. He spoke of how important teachers are and said he wanted to see average teacher pay go up by $8,000, wanted teachers to receive “longevity bonuses” of $600 […]

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Texas AFT convention highlights: Randi Weingarten speaks to the value of community schools in a “toxic” state and national environment

Texas AFT held its biennial convention–with the theme of “Public School Proud”–last weekend in El Paso. The convention included the usual business of electing statewide officers and deciding on resolutions to guide the union in the coming years. (Louis Malfaro was re-elected as president by acclamation, and Ray McMurrey was re-elected as secretary treasurer by acclamation.) The […]

Vetoes and Signings by Gov. Abbott

Gov. Greg Abbott on June 15 vetoed a good bill providing for notice to parents when their child’s school lacks full-time staffing by a school nurse or nurses. SB 196 by Sen. Sylvia Garcia (D-Houston) was a simple measure designed to protect children’s health by enabling parents to anticipate and make arrangements to address gaps […]

Highlights

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Notable Bills Signed by the Governor

Gov. Greg Abbott has until Sunday, June 18, to sign bills from the regular session into law, let them take effect without his signature, or veto them. Thus far since the session ended May 29 he has vetoed only a handful of line items within the state’s two-year budget bill for 2018-19, SB 1. Meanwhile […]

Stop Assault on Texas Unions

Your Voice: Use It or Lose It!

Update! Senate Bill 13 and House Bill 510 would have eliminated payroll deduction to pay union dues for most public employees, including teachers and other school personnel, nurses, correctional officers, child protection workers, and other public-sector workers at the state and local level. Both bills died, but the threat still remains. Learn the facts here.

From the Legislative Hotline

John Whitmire

Bad Bills in Texas Senate on Vouchers, Payroll Deduction Meet Bipartisan Resistance

Over the weekend and on Monday, bad bills in the Texas Senate promoting private-school vouchers and attacking your freedom to use payroll deduction met serious bipartisan resistance from grass-roots Texans. So did other measures, including an unfunded pay-raise proposal that would not deliver a real raise to teachers. Meanwhile, in the Texas House, opposition to vouchers, disdain for … [Read More...]

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Texas Senate Sets 16 Bills for Monday Votes, Including Vouchers and Ban on Payroll Deduction

After a long weekend of rapid-fire hearings on a mostly awful array of bills, the Senate floor-vote calendar for Monday, July 24, lists 16 items of legislation, including private-school vouchers and a ban on payroll deduction for teachers and other public employees. The next Hotline will catch you up on the weekend hearings, especially the excellent showing Sunday afternoon by Texas AFT members … [Read More...]

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Hot and Heavy Action on Education Issues at State Capitol All Weekend

Day-long debates Friday on vouchers and discrimination against transgender schoolchildren kicked off what promises to be a hot and heavy weekend of hearings on controversial Senate bills at the Texas Capitol. Also on tap for the weekend is a march for public education featuring a speech by Texas AFT President Louis Malfaro.  And we are providing you with a couple of ways to speak out yourself (see … [Read More...]

News

Around the State

Austin member a finalist for Texas Teacher of the Year An Education Austin member, Allison Ashley, has been named finalist for Texas Teacher of the Year. Ashley, a bilingual teacher at Becker … [Read More...]

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Taking the LEAD

Texas AFT members wrapped up a successful training with AFT’s Leadership, Education and Development (LEAD) Program in September in Austin. The training is designed for union activists, leaders and … [Read More...]