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TEXAS: SCHOOL CHOICE…. PAY FOR PLAY

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pay to play

I have NEVER witnessed so much political corruption and pay to play politics as I have with the School Choice agenda in Texas. This past September, I attended a School Choice Policy Summit hosted by the the not so TEXAS CONSERVATIVE COALITION. This meeting was nothing but a rally cry to promote the agenda of School Choice in Texas through the use of government subsidies titled “Education Savings Accounts” (ESA). Both School Choice and Education Savings Accounts are misnomers. We already have school choice in Texas and Education Savings Accounts (ESA) are government subsidies.

Speakers at the Pro School Choice Policy Summit were Lt Gov Dan Patrick, Senator Larry Taylor, Senator Bettencourt, State Representatives Rick Miller, Dennis Paul, Mike Schofield, and Dwayne Bohac.  Stacy Hock with Texas for Educational Opportunity and Empower Texas Board member, Mayes Middleton their “money buddies” joined them. Middleton also sits on the board of Texas Public Policy Foundation. TPPF is also a huge advocate of School Choice. Texas Public Policy Foundation provided a brochure titled “The Archilles Heel of Texas. Improving College Eligibility Rates through K-12 Education Savings Accounts.”

I could not help but notice on the bottom of the brochure was Mr. Common Core (aka) Jeb Bush’s company “ExcelinEd” listed as one of the sponsors.

 

EXCELINED

 

 

Below you can see a few who fund ExcelinEd.  NOTE: BILL & MELINDA GATES

 

EXcelineddonors

 

Stacy Hock

STACY HOCK

 

DAVID MAYES  MIDDLETON

 

 

I listened for almost 2 hours to the push for School Choice. As the meeting wrapped up they did not welcome questions from those in the audience. I approached Senator Bettencourt afterwards and mentioned to him “I as a homeschool mother am concerned about this due to Government encroachment.  Also I do not like the government in my business knowing what I am doing and where I am”.  When I said this to him  he walked away waving his mobile phone in the air stating “you need to be more concerned about this, (the mobile phone) which always knows where your are”.  I was shocked at his response and lack of professionalism and disturbed that I had paid his company thousands over the years to protest my property taxes. NEVER AGAIN.

After further research into the money. I was shocked at the thousands of dollars that Stacy Hock and Mayes Middleton combined, have contributed to Texas politicians.

**NOTE** Stacy Hock recently returned from New York, She has no education experience. Her experience in Technology. With that said she has made her way up into the helms of the Texas Education Establishment. Governor Abbott, Mr. Pro School Choice advocate, appointed Stacy Hock to the Texas Commission of Next Generation of Assessments and Accountability. Senator Larry Taylor (author of School Choice SB 3)  also sits on this Commission. The Commission just turned over their final report in September asking Gov Abbott to align our State Standards/Accountability with the Federal Every Student Succeeds Act.

You may wonder how Stacy Hock can arrive out of nowhere and be placed in such a position to make recommendations regarding the education of Thousands of Texas Children. Look no further.

greg abbott stacy

 

 

I will highlight our new Texas Representative Briscoe Cain. Mr. Money man, Mayes Middleton and Briscoe seem to be tied at the hip on the School Choice policy issue. Could it be due to his campaign funding? Mayes Middleton, other Empower Texans board members, and unfortunately school choice advocate Texas Home School Coalition have contributed thousands to Briscoe’s campaign. Despite the fact that this is another government program reigning in Texas Home Schoolers and placing all those under the umbrella of the federal Every Student Succeeds Act,  through campaign donations,  Liberty Caucus member Briscoe Cain is part of School “Choice” elite special interest group.

 

Briscoe money trail

                                          Rep. Briscoe Cain Money Trail

 

Representative Bricoe went on  Twitter calling Texas moms that are busy schooling their children and are genuinely concerned that School Choice legislation will affect their homeschooling freedom Kool-Aid Drinkers. Briscoe Kool=Aid

 

David “Mayes” Middleton funded Konni Burton’s campaign $5000.00.

 

2017-02-17_9-28-07

 

To make matters worse School Choice advocate, Peggy Venable, posts the following photo on her Face Book page cheering their lavish dinner this week hosted by the not so Texas Conservative Coalition.  Are you seeing a pattern here?

Bricoe is holding a sign up titled EDCHOICE. EDCHOICE is a national School Choice policy pusher aligned with none other than Jeb Bush and ExcelinEd funded by Bill Gates.

 

So when our Texas Representatives go to Austin claiming they are conservative. I believe it will be few are far between that truly represent their constituents and adhere to their values. Sad but true.

 

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Oh the tangled web we weave. 

 

Afterwards Peggy posted the following on facebook. Many responded including myself of our concerns and the money ties to this School Choice shenanigan.  Peggy Venable deleted all the post and blocked many of us. Some of the things we posted are below.

PEGGY VENABLE

 

nickii truesdall

16729514_10210454798858818_7845103541519499439_n

 

PLAIN UMBRELLA

 

 

 

 

 

Mayes Middleton/Empower Texans  Money Flow Chart Coming soon.

 

If you are interesting in who is funding your state rep or senator check out the following links.

 

This is an easy one. Type in their name and click funding on the right.

https://votesmart.org/education/campaign-finances#.WKdFMX_cDIY

 

If there funding is not listed you  can go to the Texas Ethics Commission and see all their contribution and expenditures. It is just a more time consuming. If you will go to the link on the left titled Search Campaign Finance and Lobbying Reports. You will click Campaign Finance once again and do the simple form. Enter their last/first name and your good to go. If you have trouble navigating your way through their call their office. They have always been more than willing to help.

https://www.ethics.state.tx.us/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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TEXAS HOME SCHOOL COALITION FLIP FLOPS ON STUDENT TESTING

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FLIP FLOP

In April 2005 Tim Lambert president of the Texas Home School Coalition was contacted by homeschool mother, Kim Hartman with concerns that the passsing of UIL legislation had negative effects on Texas Home School Freedom through testing.  Mr. Lambert responded and assured Mrs. Hartman that there would not be any testing requirement and that they the Texas Home School Coalition would work in killing any such legislation. Unfortunately the Texas Home School Coalition has taken a political flip flop position regarding policy.  The organization has shifted away from protecting Texas Home Schoolers from state testing mandates and data collection to promoting such policies.

 

Tim Lambert’s response letter below….

 

no tebow

 

The Texas Home School Coalition fought unsuccessfully during the 2015 legislative session to pass HB 347 referred to as the TEBOW bill that would require homeschooled students participating in UIL to adhere to state testing. Along with state testing comes Data Collection. Most are not aware of the Texas Student Data System that collects an enormous amount of data on all Texas public school children. This data is available to 3rd parties and is worth big bucks.

Again this past week on January 26th, a Tebow was filed by Texas Senator Van Taylor  SB 640 and the house version was filed by Rep James Frank HB 1323. Once again we now have legislation filed and if passed placing Texas Home School Students under state testing mandates and data collection of home school students for those that choose to participate in UIL. This is a slippery slope to reigning in Texas Home School Students. It is quite unfortunate that Texas Home School Coalition has lost their way.

The home school grassroots are working in forming another group, TEXANS FOR HOME SCHOOL FREEDOM.

Here is their website

Join the Facebook group page…..TEXANS FOR HOMESCHOOL FREEDOM.

follow on Twitter

 

Photo below from Taylor’s SB 640. tebow testing

 

 

 

 

 

 

Below Tim Lambert equates College Placement testing with State Mandated testing of public school students. Seriously?

 

 

Please call your Texas Senators Representatives and tell them to vote NO on the TEBOW bill.

WHO IS MY TEXAS REP?

 

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