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Southlake Style

Our Rally Cry

Feb 06, 2013 04:49PM ● By tina

Don't miss Our Schools, Our Voice Rally on February 7

CISD News with Dr. David Faltys, CISD Superintendent

All across the state, school districts are holding public rallies, forums or community gatherings to share facts about school finance and the impact past Legislative cuts have had on the education being provided to our children.

In Carroll ISD, we lost $8 million during the last biennium. Those losses have resulted in fewer administrators, teachers and support staff to serve the children of this community. They have also resulted in bus rider fees and reduced services for Carroll parents. And although it is true that public education takes the largest piece of the state’s budget pie, it’s also true that Texas trails most other states in spending per pupil. Carroll is just one of hundreds of districts suing the state of Texas over the current failed school funding system.

On February 7, Carroll, Grapevine-Colleyville and Keller school districts will join together to host a public education rally at Grapevine High School. The event –  Our Schools, Our Voice - serves as a reminder of all the good things happening in our public schools and how we must Make Education A Priority in this current Legislative Session. The event will feature student performances, motivational speeches, short video clips on how your tax dollars are being spent and steps you can take as taxpayers to get involved and make your voices heard in Austin.

But one rally on one given night is not enough. We want you to stay on top of this Legislative Session; communicate with your lawmakers and let them know that you do not want further cuts to public education and that money taken from schools needs to be restored. We all want to operate more efficiently and we are working to do everything we can to minimize the impact on the classroom, but we are at a crossroad in our budget deficit. We will do our part, but we need the Legislature to work with us and to ensure public school funding remains a priority.

At the funeral of long-time Carroll Superintendent Jack D. Johnson, we were reminded that “better schools make better communities.” We were also reminded through the life and legacy of this great educator that you can never go wrong by making quality education for all students a priority. That’s our message, plain and simple.

The men and women who represent us in Austin need to Make Education A Priority. They need to hear from all of us – not just educators, but from parents and voters – on a regular basis that investing in our children – in their education – is a step in the right direction for our state’s future.

Texas public schools are all for accountability, raising the bar and challenging students with a rigorous curriculum, but we are against high-stakes testing that labels students or campuses based on one test, or one snapshot in time. We are against mandates that come unfunded and tie the hands of locally elected School Board members.

Our children deserve to be our top priority; and while throwing money at districts won’t guarantee solutions, taking more money away from them will only make matters worse. If you are concerned about larger class sizes, additional fees and the loss of valued services and staff, please make your voice heard. Get involved; contact those who represent you in Austin and make sure they know what your priorities are as a taxpayer and voter.

Dr. David Faltys serves as Superintendent of Carroll Independent School District, the largest 5A Exemplary district in the state of Texas.  He was named by the 2010 Region XI Superintendent of the Year after being nominated for the award by his local School Board.  David and his wife, Jennifer, have four children: Dave, Peyton, Kenton and Lauren.