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What is Greg Abbott’s Education Policy?
Today, Texas kids from over 600 school districts – rural, urban and suburban from every region of our state – were dragged before the Texas Supreme Court to fight for their basic rights under our state constitution.
Who are they up against? Attorneys representing Governor Greg Abbott and other Texas state leaders.
For over four years, Greg Abbott and other state leaders have led a court house assault on Texas kids and their families.
Forget Greg Abbott’s rhetoric about "world class education" in Texas. His actions tell the real story. First as state Attorney General and now as Governor, Abbott has refused to abide by our state’s constitution which says:
Sec. 1. SUPPORT AND MAINTENANCE OF SYSTEM OF PUBLIC FREE SCHOOLS. A general diffusion of knowledge being essential to the preservation of the liberties and rights of the people, it shall be the duty of the Legislature of the State to establish and make suitable provision for the support and maintenance of an efficient system of public free schools.
Instead, Abbott has used state tax dollars and countless legal maneuvers to undermine Texas kids and their parents.
Here are the facts:
- In 2011, Republican state leaders chopped over $5 billion dollars in Texas public school funding. As then Attorney General, Greg Abbott failed to warn legislators that massive cuts in public school funding violated our state’s constitution, and sat silent while the massive cuts were made. Even the conservative business publication Forbes Magazine said Texas had "abandoned its children."
- Texas families fought back in the only they could – by suing the state of Texas. Instead of working to settle the dispute and asking state leaders to repair the Texas public school funding process, Greg Abbott opened up a full legal assault on Texas kids and their families.
- After a full-blown trial and months of deliberations, Texas District Court Judge John Dietz ruled against Abbott and in favor of Texas kids. Judge Dietz identified four clear violations of the state constitution.
- After losing in District Court, Abbott again had the option of moving to settle the case and bring Texas schools back into compliance with our constitution. Instead, he appealed the case to the Texas Supreme Court, forcing kids and their families to remain mired in a legal battle against the leadership of their own state.
- As Governor, Abbott could have taken up for Texas kids and proposed a new school funding reform. He didn’t.
- Now, Ken Paxton is carrying Abbott’s banner into the Texas Supreme Court against Texas kids, while also fighting to avoid prison on felony criminal charges. Today, attorneys from Paxton's office argued against Texas school kids and in defense of an unconstitutional school funding system.
Abbott could end school litigation
If he wanted, Greg Abbott could call on Attorney General Ken Paxton to immediately withdraw the state’s appeal to the Texas Supreme Court and move to settle the lawsuit. The Legislature could be called into session to adopt the provisions of the settlement.
Until Greg Abbott calls for a settlement, it can be fairly assumed that he is leading the assault against Texas kids and their right to a good education.