School Choice in Texas: Governor Greg Abbott Turns Up the Pressure In Passing It

School Choice in Texas – School choice has been a contentious issue in Texas for years, and Governor Greg Abbott is turning up the pressure to make it a reality. He has made school choice his top priority and has been traveling across the state to advocate for education savings accounts for every Texas parent, particularly in more rural communities. The governor’s intense campaigning has put lawmakers on alert, but it remains to be seen if it will be enough to sway those who are protective of public schools.

School Choice in Texas
School Choice in Texas. Governor Greg Abbott turns up the pressure in passing it. (PHOTO: Washington Examiner)

School Choice in Texas

The Senate Education Committee has approved Senate Bill 8, the chief school policy proposal this session, which would create education savings account with up to $8,000 in taxpayer money per student. Unlike vouchers, the money would go directly to parents instead of the school. However, rural Republicans in the Texas House has been a reliable firewall against school choice proposals, as they view public schools as the lifeblood of their communities. To win them over, lawmakers have sought to shield school districts with fewer than 20,000 students from any funding losses caused by SB 8.

Texas Tribune reported that opponents of Abbott’s push for school choice in Texas argue that policies like Senate Bill 8 have faced resistance in the House from Democrats and rural Republicans. Nevertheless, Abbott has named “education freedom” as one of seven emergency items for the session and has hit the road for it more than any other priority. His lobbying effort has anti-school-choice lawmakers on alert, but they are confident that their coalition in the Legislature will withstand the governor’s campaign.

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Public Education Committee

The Public Education Committee, led by new chair Rep. Brad Buckley, R-Killeen, is likely to be the first stop for any school choice bill in the House. This committee’s formation has generated considerable intrigue since House Speaker Dade Phelan, R-Beaumont, announced committee assignments without revealing who would lead the Public Education Committee, a departure from tradition.

Governor Greg Abbott is pushing harder than ever for school choice legislation in Texas, advocating for education savings accounts for every Texas parent. Senate Bill 8 is facing opposition from rural Republicans who are protective of their public schools, making the passage of a school choice measure anything but a sure bet. However, Abbott is confident in his campaign and is urging the Legislature to back education savings accounts for every Texas parent. It remains to be seen if his efforts will be successful, but one thing is for sure: the fight for school choice in Texas is far from over.

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