Why Education is Rallying My Political Past

Once upon a time, more than a decade ago, I was in politics. My life has been reinvented many times over with lots of different hats, but that was my career. I worked for Senators, Congressmen and two Texas Governors, one of whom is better knows as a former President.

With former President George HW Bush, then Florida Governor Jeb Bush and then Governor George W. Bush

With former President George HW Bush, then Florida Governor Jeb Bush and then Governor George W. Bush

With Texas Senators Phil Gramm and Kay Bailey Hutchison and the Singing Senators. Have you see the House of Cards episode where Congressman Underwood sings with his old college buddies? Think maybe idea came from the real-life Singing Senators.

With Texas Senators Phil Gramm and Kay Bailey Hutchison and the Singing Senators. Have you see the House of Cards episode where Congressman Underwood sings with his old college buddies? Think maybe idea came from the real-life Singing Senators.

With longest serving Texas Governor Rick Perry

With longest serving Texas Governor Rick Perry

While my job made being knowledgeable of the issues of the day easier, I was on the money-side.  More preoccupied with raising thousands of dollars from “influential” people, attending cush events and jumping in for the photo-ops (as you can see) than engaging in meaningful conversation about the implications of specifcs bills and issues.

And to be honest, since my consulting days came to a close and I have also since moved states, the side of me that loved politics has laid dormant. Not that I don’t have opinions or care, just too busy with more personal issues.

But what is happening with education is personal!

If we don’t wake up and pay attention the issue at hand will effect our children greatly.  I am talking specifically about what is going on in my state with the funding shortage, but I imagine this may be happening in other states too.

My school district alone will experience a $4 million shortfall just next year. That translates in to administrators not being able to hire the number of teachers necessary, leading to the over-sized classrooms that parents are already complaining about growing even larger. And this is not the fault of the schools!

In years to come, this will effect the future of extra-curricular activities and athletics, too. Every public school student and family, teacher and administrator, as well as, communities will feel the effects, one way or the other.

That is why the Rally for Education being held tomorrow at the Oklahoma state capitol is so important.

It is about the future of our children and state of our schools. It is about legislators coming up with the money even though it will mean taxes passed on to some of their “influential” donors. Can they stand up to the politics? Will corporations and individuals support them and sacrifice because they understand why new or higher taxes have to happen? 

I hope so.  While I can’t personally attend the rally, I have written a letter to my legislator.  I have seen why I must put my political hat back on and pay attention. And I know our schools and teachers who tirelessly give of themselves for our kids’ good, yet are often met with misdirected and misinformed complaints, deserve our united support! 

th-2

For more information about what is happening in Oklahoma: http://www.okedcoalition.org

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2 thoughts on “Why Education is Rallying My Political Past

  1. I will be leading the cross timbers rally group tomorrow! I never in a million years dreamed I would be riding a bus to the Capitol with PTO parents to rally for dollars. I have just finished working on a bill with representative Jason Nelson and senator Trent. I have seen with my own eyes how much what we think and say really matters! IT MATTERS and it really can help change our direction! I would love for all of you who always think someone else will go instead of me to rethink your decision and join me at Frontier City at 9:30 tomorrow morning. Your presence makes a very big difference. When we don’t show up, we don’t care. Just show up and teach our kids that they matter and we care about their education.

    Jennifer

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