Welcome to the Raise Your Hand Texas blog, featuring news about our leadership programs and advocacy efforts, important and timely updates, and opportunities for you to join us in strengthening and improving public education in Texas. Feel free to sort the posts below by checking the category boxes in the left menu, then clicking “Filter.” For more immersive storytelling about public education leaders and issues, check out our Stories section.

    Participate in the Save Texas Schools Rally—February 23rd

    If you want to stand up for Texas public schools, Save Texas Schools is hosting a march and rally at the Capitol in Austin on Saturday, February 23rd. The march is scheduled to begin on the Congress Avenue Bridge at 10:45 AM, heading to the South Steps of the Capitol where it will continue from noon-1:30.

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    home rule bill

    Capitol Update 1/25: An Insider’s Guide to Key Legislative Issues in Public Education

    Senator Kel Seliger (R-Amarillo) filed Senate Bill 225, a bill making crucial improvements to relating to curriculum and end-of-course assessment requirements.

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    2013 Raise Your Hand Texas Legislative Agenda

    Texas public schools educate 5 million students. That’s 5 million reasons we need strong Texas public schools. Raise Your Hand Texas believes our public schools remain the best tool we have as a state to create the most opportunity for the most people.

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    Oppose School Vouchers

    In terms of meeting that goal, school vouchers aren’t a solution – they’re a distraction

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    Support Stronger Accountability and Transparency for Virtual School Providers

    While full-time virtual school providers educate only a small fraction of them, their enrollment has grown rapidly despite poor academic results and little transparency

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    Reduce High-Stakes Testing

    These students need meaningful coursework, not endless exams. Support an accountability system that emphasizes actual learning, not “teaching to the test.”

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    Fund Pre-K and Reward High Quality Pre-K Programs

    Investment in Pre-K gives us a chance to close the achievement gap before it starts. Research shows that participation in Pre-K cuts the school readiness gap in half on entry into kindergarten.

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    Increase Career and Technical Course Options for Texas Students

    These students are the future of our state and the engine for o ur economy. But the current one-size-fits-all curriculum provides little room for career and technical courses that could lead to an industry certification or licensure. Support more flexible graduation plans that give students greater motivation now, and a wider range of options after they graduate.

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    Support Effective Charters, Close Failing Ones

    Texas doesn’t need more charters. It needs more high-performing charter schools. Acting swiftly to close failing charter schools protects Texas students and families while creating more opportunities for high-performing charter schools to serve students

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    Restore Critical Funding for Texas Public Schools

    Texas public schools educate 5 million students. That’s 5 million reasons to implement better and fairer funding for our public schools. Last session $5.3 billion was slashed from state funding for public schools. Texas ranks second nationally in total public school enrollment – but 45th in the nation in per-student spending in 2011-2012.

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