Politicians in Central Texas: Addressing Education Issues

When it comes to addressing issues related to education, politicians in Central Texas are significantly less likely to take action. This is a major problem, as the quality of public education in Texas and across the country has been suffering for more than two years due to the pandemic. However, many members of the political class are more focused on social issues than on education. One way to tackle this issue is to enlist the help of organizations such as Parents Defending Education, a group related to Koch that claims to be a grassroots nonprofit organization.

According to their brochure, it would be beneficial to address problems at both the national and state levels, but it would be easier to do so if they were first addressed at the local level. This is because the first set of prominent associations are those of local school boards. Race is an ever-present factor that shapes the past, present, and future of Texas. The state continues to grapple with its history of slavery, its role in the Confederacy, and the impact of segregation.

While this study finds broad support for diversity and equality among Texans, it also reveals how racial issues expose the sharpest contrasts in the threads of Texas. These issues appear today in debates about renaming military bases, removing Confederate statues, brutality and police reform, and how all of these issues are addressed in schools. Despite the growth of knowledge economies in the state, nearly two-thirds of Texans believe that the Texas education system should equip young people with applicable business skills. Only Lone Star Progressives and Rising Mavericks, the segment with the highest percentage of young Texans, are quite divided between prioritizing business skills or higher education.

That group is “associated” with Patriot Mobile, a right-wing telephone company based in North Texas. In 1995, Texas passed its first bill creating charter schools which promised “schools of choice” for children apparently stuck in public schools that were failing. Among Democrats, positive predispositions toward using government for social goods compete with the reality of Republican control of the education system in Texas. The Casey Foundation, a charitable organization dedicated to child welfare, ranks Texas thirty-third in the U.

S. for educational outcomes despite its high spending per student. Recently, Texas took the national lead in banning books (a frequent target is The Bluest Eye by Nobel Prize winner Toni Morrison), and some school librarians who tried to hold the line against unjustified censorship were subject to death threats. Despite traditional perceptions of Texan values, not only a large number of Lone Star progressives but even one in three Texans with conservative values emphasize the centrality of collective efforts to determine the future of Texas.

In October 2020, Texas recognized Fentanyl Poisoning Awareness Month in an effort to draw more attention to the dangers posed by this deadly drug. A bill called Tucker's Law after Tucker Roe was sponsored by his mother Stefanie Turner and the nonprofit organization Texas Against Fentanyl (TXAF). For a time, Dripping Springs united against divisive culture wars being waged in other towns and cities in Texas. One way Texas measures academic progress in public schools is through State of Texas Academic Readiness Assessments (STAAR), a standardized test.

While some project-based civic education classes remain limited in scope or have completely disappeared in Texas, unlike debates over Texas history reverent Texans and heritage advocates are outliers when it comes to collective efforts determining its future. School funding in Texas is largely based on attendance; money follows the child. But by far, West Texas oil billionaires Tim Dunn and brothers Farris and Dan Wilks are some of its most powerful opponents of public schools. Nearly all Lone Star progressives (97%) believe that racism is still an important issue in Texas today while most heritage advocates (86%) and reverent Texans (72%) disagree.