HB 21, the bill by Rep. Dan Huberty (R-Houston) to revise school-finance formulas and increase school aid to districts, comes to the House floor Wednesday. Some 46 proposed amendments to the bill have been pre-filed as of 5 p.m. today. Texas AFT supported the bill in committee and supports it as it comes to the floor. We will be on watch for troublesome amendments but open to changes that could improve the bill.
Meanwhile the Senate Education Committee on Tuesday will hear a bunch of other school-finance bills. While the Senate bills would not increase funding, several would improve funding formulas to improve equity and provide relief to both rural and urban districts. The leading Senate bill to be heard Tuesday is SB 2145 by Sen. Larry Taylor (R-Friendswood). It reflects a school-finance overhaul proposed by the Equity Center. The restructuring of funding formulas in SB 2145 would enhance equity in multiple ways. But real, long-term solutions for school finance demand substantial increases in funding, starting immediately.