Feb 2, 2023 - News

Rally protesting Houston ISD takeover tonight

Illustration of a pattern of apples and stacks of textbooks.

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Organizers will rally outside Houston ISD's administrative offices tonight to protest the push by the Texas Education Agency (TEA) to take over the school board.

Catch up quick: The agency initially tried to take over the board in 2019 over years of poor test scores at Wheatley High School, per Houston Public Media.

  • The school district opposed the move and sued the agency in 2020.
  • The case made it to the Texas Supreme Court, and last month, justices sided with the TEA, clearing the way for state-appointed managers to replace elected school board members.

Yes, but: It's still unclear whether the state agency — led by Gov. Greg Abbott appointee Mike Morath — will follow through.

Driving the news: Houston Community Voices for Public Education (CVPE) is hosting the rally, which has support from a variety of groups, including the League of United Latin American Citizens and FIEL Houston.

  • The group will meet at 4:30pm outside the Hattie Mae White Educational Support Center.

What they're saying: "It's the very worst thing one could do to help students recovering from the harmful effects of COVID is to start some other new thing that's confusing to children, leading to more principal and teacher churn and kids having strangers teach them," said Ruth Kravetz, co-founder of Houston CVPE.

What's next: The Houston ISD board plans to discuss the lawsuit behind closed doors during its next meeting Feb. 9.

What we're watching: Kravetz thinks the TEA will wait until the school year and legislative session end to announce a decision, perhaps in May.

Of note: The TEA did not respond to Axios' request for comment.


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