It is no secret that public educators and public education itself are currently under attack in Texas. Our own governor has been making plans for the reopening of Texas public schools with little to no regard for the safety and wellbeing of teachers. Privatization forces have long been waging a war against public education for years now. At times like these, when public educators feel attacked from all sides, we are incredibly thankful to our leaders who choose to stand with educators across Texas.
There are many public education champions in the Texas Legislature who are fighting for us, and many have come to our aid in big ways just these past couple weeks. One such advocate is Representative Donna Howard, who recently released a public statement asking Gov. Abbott to prioritize teacher and student safety and provide schools with adequate funding to safely reopen, because she sees that the current plan clearly is not adequate. Likewise, fellow central Texas Rep. Erin Zwiener sent an open letter to Texas Education Agency (TEA) Commissioner Mike Morath telling him to both pause plans to reopen schools until it is safe to reopen.
Representative Terry Canales has been a ferocious defender of public educators, both in his own open letter to Governor Abbott expressing his concern over school’s reopening as well as in his social media presence on Twitter, continuingly calling out the Governor and TEA for their reckless actions and elevating the voices of public educators.
One of our allies on the other side of the capitol, Senator José Menendez, has been an exceptional advocate for teacher safety. His office was able to organize a survey of public educators and public education stakeholders showing community concern about Gov. Abbott’s hazardous and shortsighted plan to reopen schools. The results of the survey can be seen by clicking here.
Now more than ever, the work of our friends in the Texas legislature is appreciated. We thank you for your advocacy.