SBOE Candidate: Judy Jennings

Because of redistricting, all 15 seats on the Texas State Board of Education will be up for grabs in the November 2012 elections. The results of those elections will determine whether the religious right’s corrosive influence over public education will weaken or grow as the board considers what the next generation of public school students in Texas will learn about sex education, social studies, science and other subjects. We plan to publish on TFN Insider candidate announcements for a seat on the SBOE. We will publish announcements in no particular order, and their publication does not constitute any sort of endorsement by TFN. We will redact requests for contributions or mentions of fundraising events from the announcements, but we will provide links to the candidates’ websites (if available).

Click here to go to TFN’s SBOE Election HQ, with in-depth information about state board districts, elections and candidates this year.

Judy Jennings, District 10, D-Austin
(Current District 10 Board Member: Marsha Farney, R-Georgetown)

Judy Jennings is running for the open District 10 seat on the SBOE. Current District 10 board member Marsha Farney will vacate her seat to run for the Texas House. Jennings’ website is

Extremists at the Wheel
A ultra-conservative Republicans on our Texas State Board of Education have rewritten the curriculum according to their own political agenda. Based on the advice of political extremists, they have muddled up the teaching of history, science, sex education … even math! But there is hope. Democrat Judy Jennings, a curriculum specialist, is running to bring rational decision making back to the board. She’ll take politics out of the classroom and make sure that teachers and experts are making sound curriculum decisions so our children are well prepared for the 21st Century economy.

About Judy Jennings
Judy Jennings is a wife, mother and grandmother—and an expert in education policy. Her daughter is a public-school teacher in Williamson County, and her son taught English in Korea. Judy had not finished college when she met and married her husband, Hal. But as her children grew, Judy returned to school and earned her bachelor’s degree. She then earned her Ph.D. while working at the Texas Education Agency (TEA).

From her years as a teaching assistant at the University of Texas at Austin through her work on accountability at the Texas Education Agency to her current position as Director of Assessment at Resources for Learning, Judy has spent years working on the very issues for which the State Board of Education is responsible.

She has the skills, training and experience to be a productive member of the board overseeing public education in Texas.

One thought on “SBOE Candidate: Judy Jennings

  1. Sensible Party. Potentially even Very Sensible Party.
    For what it’s worth, has my endorsement. =)

    Contrariwise, TFN hasn’t given much coverage to the how the conservatives might have messed up the math standards; and looking through them, I don’t see a lot of further pissing in the teacup. Moving A2F05 to pre-Calc seems a dumbing down, as do one or two other shifts (PG18 through 22); and there are a couple things that I think should be shifted a bit earlier (like logistic curves). I’m not sure what they did with Calc such that PA07 through PA09 are “not prerequisite” — they’re needed for some higher calculus, though more at the college level. Dropping reference to the Fundamental Theorem of Algebra (and not mentioning the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus) seems a fundamental mistake. Apparently killing as “just science” AD206 (I think – the changes aren’t clear what exactly was dropped) is subtly worrisome, but more because of the issues over science make me prefer a period of redundancy than a period of omission. I’d think AQRN09 really ought to explicitly mention Arrow’s Impossibility Theorem.

    Still mostly, I’m not seeing big issues in the changes. (Baseline… well, my opinions on math education are radical-to-whackjob, and presently impractical.) I’m guessing THN didn’t see big issues, either. Given that public comment on the math changes seems to be ending soon (?), a look might be in order… and perhaps a “well, we guess they can’t screw up everything” piece to give limited credit if due.

    It could be very interesting to ask what particular objections Dr. Jennings has to the math standards.