Advocating for Public Education During Special Sessions

October 26, 2023  

Legislators often share that they benefit from constituents’ ideas and perspectives. The unique viewpoints of others help them do their jobs well, and know the most pressing issues of their communities back home. Educators, students, families, and business leaders truly hold the power to impact public education decisions in Austin – regardless of a city’s size, challenges, or location within the state. It’s up to you to speak up for positive change in Texas public schools.

“We want Texans to know they have a crucial role to play in public education advocacy,” said Dr. Libby Cohen, Raise Your Hand Texas’ senior director of advocacy. 

“Ultimately, advocates’ voices matter most regarding the processes and activities happening at the state capitol, because it’s their communities that are going to be impacted and shaped by the decisions legislators are making right now,” Cohen said.

What is Public Education Advocacy?

At Raise Your Hand Texas, our advocacy work strives to  – 

  • Shift the narrative around public education;
  • Build coalitions of support for public education;
  • Ensure that every legislative session is a public education session; and,
  • Connect lawmakers and education stakeholders — including educators, families and students.
Teacher advocates at the Capitol for Raise Your Hand Texas’ Teacher Advocacy Days during the 88th Regular Session.

People anywhere can call for change. Any time is a good time for you to advocate and participate to make a difference, working toward what Texas needs most right now: a well-funded public education system that serves our 5.5 million Texas students. 

Here are ways you can advocate for Texas public schools this Special Session:

1. Contact your legislators

Your voice matters – now is a great time to reach out to your legislators and ask them to prioritize and invest in our Texas public schools. During the third special session, Texas legislators have an opportunity to do right by our Texas children and educators by increasing funding for our schools, raising the basic allotment, giving our Texas teachers a raise, and standing strong against vouchers. Let’s continue to make sure they hear our call for change.

Send them an email right now and encourage others to do the same. Find your local representatives using the “Who Represents Me” tool on our website.

2. Keep up-to-date with the latest legislative public education news

Stay in the know with what’s happening inside the Capitol with Across the Lawn – Raise Your Hand Texas’ e-newsletter. Throughout the special session, each edition will give an overview of what you should know regarding the latest filed legislation, observations and useful information, as well as important public education announcements. We’ll also provide “one thing to do” that week to stay involved in the discussion.

Sign up to receive Across the Lawn here.

3. Connect with our Regional Advocacy Directors

Our Regional Advocacy Directors work across the State, growing support for our Texas public schools. They help educators, families, students, and business leaders amplify their voices in conversations and create a pro-public education constituency.

Find your Regional Advocacy Director here.

4. Get out the Vote

Public education is always on the ballot. Texas public schools educate 5.5 million children across the state. Texas’ future success depends on how well we educate today’s students. We must elect officials who support investing in our public school students, because these students are the future workforce of Texas.

Register to vote, or view your voter registration. See who is running where you live and learn more about the candidates.

Show your support for Texas public education and vote today!

5. Calls to Action

Text RAISEMYHAND to 4069 to be added to our list of advocates who receive Raise Your Hand Texas calls to action at key legislative moments.

We’re midway through the third special session with public education on the initial call. The fight for adequate school funding is far from over, and we believe our 5.5 million students and their teachers deserve adequate funding.

Your advocacy can make a difference in protecting Texas’ public schools. Every action matters – make your voice heard.

Tags: Advocacy Community school funding

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