Your Advocacy Still Needed on HB 3!
05.16.2019 — Last week, the TASA officers called TASA members to action on HB 3, the school finance bill. Your presence in Austin is still greatly needed during the next week and a half!
The conference committee is meeting on the school finance bill, and our legislators need to hear from you that they should:
- Provide flexible funding in addition to a teacher pay raise and trust local school boards to make the best decisions for their communities.
- Keep prior-year values that provide the safeguard school districts need to accommodate enrollment fluctuations and prepare budgets for the upcoming year.
- Oppose the 2.5 percent limit on local school district tax collections that will automatically increase in cost over time, putting future state budgets at risk.
- Oppose test-based funding that has no basis in research, creates a dangerous culture based on winners and losers and exacerbates the overemphasis on high-stakes testing in Texas. Third-graders should not have to feel the pressure of determining a school district’s budget.
- Oppose adding more high-stakes writing assessments that will divert attention from other classroom needs.
- Oppose start date restrictions that prevent school districts from providing their students the same opportunity to prepare before the STAAR tests as charter school students.
Download these talking points on HB 3 for use when discussing school finance with legislators and their staff. It's also important to let legislators know how specific provisions of HB 3 impact your district. This side-by-side comparison of the House and Senate school finance bills will be helpful for those discussions.
The importance of the next week and a half at the Capitol can't be overstated. Please set aside a day to travel to Austin and legislators’ offices in both chambers. If coming to Austin is impossible, please reach out to them by phone or email regularly until the end of the session.
Never before have the stakes been this high. The future of our students and the state will be greatly affected by the outcome of this legislative session and HB 3.
Find contact information for your legislator here.