Texans Rally Over School Funding

A rally is planned in Austin tomorrow to draw attention to additional proposed cuts to school funding.  The Save Texas Schools organization is busing in people from all over Texas to rally on the steps of the State Capitol.

Save Texas Schools organized a rally last year when the state proposed cutting more than $5 billion from school funding.

More than 13,000 people participated in that event. Allen Weeks chairs the nonpartisan organization and says they don't expect as many people this time around, but they're hoping that a rally during an election year will have a stronger effect.

"You know, doing a big rally while the session is going on — things are already set in place. The officials have been elected to fulfill certain promises. And this last time they'd been elected to cut government and to cut the budget and they weren't going to change. And so we're rallying right now because we have a chance to change things for the next session."

The Texas primaries are on May 29th and Weeks says their first priority is to encourage people to vote.

"The percentage of people that vote in primaries is so small that a small number of people can really change things for good or ill. And I'd say to teachers listening to this, 30 percent of teachers vote statewide. And teachers, if they would get out and vote pro-education, it doesn't matter the party, but vote pro-education, we could turn this around."

Right now, the state faces five lawsuits over it's school finance system, with more than 500 Texas school districts represented in those suits.

Bio photo of Laurie Johnson

Laurie Johnson

Local Host, All Things Considered

Laurie Johnson is the Houston host for All Things Considered at KUHF NPR for Houston. Before taking the anchor chair, she worked as a general assignments reporter at KUHF, starting there as an intern in 2002...