Before taking the oath of office as Texas’ new Lieutenant Governor in January, Sen. Dan Patrick continues to promote his pro-private school voucher agenda as chair of the Senate Education Committee. Patrick has scheduled a Nov. 17 committee hearing to discuss two interim charges as well as issues relating to school facilities funding.
Senate Interim Charge #3 calls for the committee to review school choice programs in other states, examine the potential budgetary impact of voucher-related tax credits, and review parent trigger and Public Education Grant program laws already on the books in Texas. Under Senate Interim Charge #4, the committee will discuss the implementation of last year’s comprehensive charter school legislation, Senate Bill 2. View the full agenda here and stay tuned to Teach the Vote for updates following Monday’s meeting.
On a related note, three well-known voices in Texas politics penned a recent article criticizing school privatization efforts. The authors, former Lieutenant Governor Bill Ratliff, current State Board of Education member Thomas Ratliff, and current State Representative Bennett Ratliff, opine that arguments in favor of privatization are based on the myth of students being “trapped in failing schools.” The Ratliffs also lay out reasons that private school vouchers would not be beneficial to teachers or students in Texas. Read the article here.