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House Committees on Public Education and Higher Education Convene for Marathon 12-Hour Hearing

Tree-lined walkway leading to the Texas Capitol building

Texas AFT member Rebekah Ozuna (left) testifies late in the evening at the joint committee hearing This Tuesday, the House Committee on Public Education and the House Committee on Higher Education held a joint hearing to discuss solutions to the teacher retention crisis. The marathon hearing lasted 12 hours and included 14 panels of invited testimony discussing the teacher recruitment...

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Update on Texas House-Senate Budget Maneuvers

Texas Senate negotiators delivered a proposal to House Speaker Joe Straus today reportedly seeking House agreement to the Senate’s planned funding levels for public education—containing cuts in school funding about half as deep as the House cuts but still devastating. House negotiators supposedly have moved toward the Senate’s position but...

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Saturday “Rally in the Capitol” to Save Texas Schools

The Texas House will be in session on Saturday, which may well be the crucial day of decision on the state budget. It is vital that your legislators hear from you on this day and see a strong presence in the capitol of supporters of Texas public education who demand...

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The Case for Using the Rainy Day Fund, Governor Perry Notwithstanding

As lawmakers have second thoughts about deep budget cuts, some are naturally starting to wonder if the governor’s stance against any use of the state’s Rainy Day Fund for 2012-2013 is really as politically astute as they previously supposed. In fact, the case for using the Rainy Day Fund is...

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Action Opportunity—Rally in the Capitol on Saturday, May 21

Mark your calendar! This Saturday, May 21, our friends at the Save Texas Schools parent/community group have called for a rally “in the capitol” to press legislators to reverse the deep cuts planned for public schools and other core public services. Please come to the capitol for this important event...

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Tuition Exemption for Educational Aides—Helpful Amendment in House

Rep. Scott Hochberg, Democrat of Houston, did a good turn yesterday for educational aides who have been receiving scholarship help to attend college and become certified teachers. He amended his bill, HB 3624, to ensure that all those already attending college with the help of this program would remain eligible...

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Positive Developments Concerning TRS Governance, Benefit Bills

Two positive bills affecting governance and benefits under the Teacher Retirement System were passed by the Texas House this week. HB 3747 by Rep. Ruth Jones McClendon, Democrat of San Antonio, would provide for the direct election by TRS members of the four TRS trustees who represent retirees, employees in...

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