When Cynthia "Public Schools Are Tools of Perversion" Dunbar recruited Austin attorney Brian Russell to run for the seat she is vacating on the Texas State Board of Education, the obvious question was whether Russell shares her contempt for public education. We got a partial answer when it was revealed that Russell home-schools his kids. Then yesterday the Austin American-Statesman's Jason Embry reported Russell's favorable reaction to an anti-public schools screed posted to Facebook by an officer of the Young Conservatives of Texas (YCT). Read More

As we all wait for election results this evening, check out Paul Burka’s excellent essay about the State Board of Education that just went online at Texas Monthly. Money quotes:

“I do not toss around the term ‘far right’ groundlessly. Here is how retiring board member Cynthia Dunbar describes the institution of public education in her recent book, One Nation Under God: a ‘subtly deceptive tool of perversion.’ Dunbar and her allies on the SBOE have given up on public education. Rather than address how to improve public schools, they seek to slay dragons—evolution, sex education, whole language, new ways of teaching math, unpatriotic depictions of Texas and American history.”

“The bipartisan political action committee Parent PAC has emerged in the past two election cycles to back candidates who support public schools; witness its endorsement of (Thomas) Ratliff against (Don) McElroy. The Texas Freedom Network calls attention to outrages, of which there is no shortage. For many years there have been no consequences for a majority faction that has failed to put the future of Texas ahead of its personal and ideological agendas. With any luck, the majority won’t be a majority anymore.”

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The Texas Freedom Network has been stepping up efforts to protect the right of families to direct the religious education of their own children as the religious right's assault on that freedom moves into high gear. The latest example of the right's increasingly aggressive campaign: an Ohio teacher has filed a lawsuit claiming that public school officials have violated his constitutional and civil rights by trying to stop him from promoting his religious beliefs in the classroom. School officials in Mount Vernon, Ohio, took action against John Freshwater, an eighth-grade science teacher, after an investigation into a series of incidents. The Columbus Dispatch reports:…… Read More

Just Texas

To all who celebrate, we wish a very happy and sweet new year this Rosh Hashanah! We are incredibly grateful for the passionate Jewish leaders in our community working towards reproductive freedom, LGBTQ inclusion, and the empowerment of women. pic.twitter.com/jCcZ…