Rally Wants To 'Save Texas Schools'

People who support public education are demanding the state reverse cuts enacted during the last legislative session. They're hoping to repeat a massive protest they staged almost a year ago.

Chanting: “Save our schools ... ”

This is what it sounded like last March when 13,000 people from across Texas converged on the State Capitol to protest cuts to public education. Organizers said it was one of the largest Capitol rallies in state history. Now the same group of activists wants to do it all over again next month.

“Even with an improving economy, we still face a sizable state budget deficit and further budget cuts to education in 2013, all because of irresponsibility by our legislature.”

Allen Weeks chairs the Save Texas Schools coalition. He hosted a news conference with two Democratic state representatives, labor leaders, and others like Charles Chadwell, the president of the Round Rock school board. He explained how $5 billion in cuts to public education trickled down to his district.

“We had to go through quite a bit last year because the legislature came and said this is your cut, you’re going to lose $60- $70 million out of a budget, out of $330 million. That was a huge chunk.”

But state lawmakers who voted for last year’s budget cuts said it was necessary to avoid increasing taxes and potentially harming the Texas economy during a time of economic recovery.  Save Texas Schools is holding its rally for public education on Saturday, March 24.  

This story is from KUT's Nathan Bernier.