Posted On: July 07, 2017
How ATPE Fought for YOU During the Legislative Session
The 2017 legislative session was a busy one, and your ATPE Lobby Team worked tirelessly to fight off dangerous bills.
During the legislative session, ATPE's Governmental Relations team:
- Lobbied for dramatic improvements to the state’s school finance system and urged lawmakers to provide the resources necessary to allow every child in Texas access to an exemplary public education
- Helped prevent the passage of bills that would change the defined benefit structure of TRS, raised awareness of the dramatically rising costs of educators’ healthcare programs, and helped secure additional funding for TRS-Care to prevent retired educators from losing their access to healthcare
- Fought back against anti-educator bills that would do away with payroll deduction for voluntary professional association dues
- Helped defeat bills aimed at creating private school voucher programs
- Advocated for maintaining high standards for the education profession and a compensation and benefits structure that promotes educator recruitment and retention
- Supported bills to reduce the role that standardized test scores play in our accountability system for schools, in teacher evaluations, and in high-stakes decisions for students
- Supported changes to the A-F accountability system put in place last session
- Bolstered efforts to prevent and punish cyberbullying
- Supported prohibiting the Texas Education Agency (TEA) from basing a school’s performance on the number of students in special education programs
- Worked closely with lawmakers to address educator misconduct
But our work isn’t over yet! Gov. Greg Abbott has called a special session beginning July 18 to cover 20 items, including several public education issues. For a full review of how Texas education faired during the 85th Texas Legislature and to learn more about the special session, read our blog at TeachtheVote.org.
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