Tuesday, March 31, 2015

School Choice and the Texas Hispanic Community

"Take firm hold of instruction, do not let go;
Keep her, for she is your life."
Proverbs 4:13

The Texas Public Policy Foundation, along with the Libre Initiative, held an event this afternoon: School Choice and the Hispanic Community.  Ironically, the event was held on the same day that the Texas House is going to take up an anti-School Choice budget amendment.  The event below.

Michael Barba (TPPF):

  • Gaps between Hispanic and White students haven't changed in 20 years.
  • Hispanics drop out at three times the rate of White Students.
  • I can side against parents having options because I had options.
  • School Choice is a means, not an end.
  • Fantastic hearing last Thursday.

  • Traditional public, homeschool, Charter schools, Virtual schools, and private are the five models.
  • Parents and Students are customers.
  • Your ability to take your business elsewhere "drives innovation."
  • We should give public schools a premium.
    • Author's Note: We don't particularly agree, but we're willing to make the concession if it'll move a bill.
  • Parents know best.
  • "It's not the government's decision."
  • We don't discriminate based on demographics, we discriminate via Zip Code.
  • School choice will not happen until the Latino community leads.

  • It's an issue of school quality, not poverty.
  • Middle class kids aren't doing great.\
  • Texas has very low proficiency standards.
  • Less than 1/3rd of students at one high income school in Coppell.
  • All parents should be concerned about school quality.


  • His charter school district has a 1500+ waiting list.
  • Florida is expanding school choice; Texas has barely started.
  • School choice rally last Friday in Brownsville.
  • Events in San Antonio and Dallas coming up.
  • Libre in Seven states.
  • School choice is a Hispanic issue.
  • Other Hispanic orgs aren't doing the legwork.


  • Within public schools, you have to have parental involvement.
  • Intense positive character education.
  • Life is not meant to to be complicated.
  • A lot of rural legislators are afraid of educrats.
  • We've never made the case to Republican voters about how school choice benefits them personally; we always present it as an altruistic thing to help someone else.

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