Toolbox Tuesday?

It’s getting tough to talk about the Toolbox on every Tuesday when school as we traditionally know it is not happening. The Toolbox, as most Loyal Readers know, is our firm’s one-day training program for dealing with disruptive and/or violent behavior from students with disabilities.  I’ll get back to the Toolbox on future Tuesdays but for today, I offer a different kind of “toolbox.”

You have a citizenship toolbox.  The tools in that toolbox involve learning about important issues in your community, studying the positions of candidates for office, expressing your views to elected representatives.  And the most important tool you have is the right to vote.  It is, of course, a right—but it’s also a duty. 

A city councilman in a town not far from Austin recently stirred up the proverbial hornets’ nest when he referred to teachers as “leeches” and expressed the view that they should not be paid if they don’t return to regular in-person teaching despite the….you know….the thing that’s been happening.  Specifically he said “Stop catering to the leeches….Fire them and rehire new teachers.”  And then there was this: “America’s parents do not have to put up with being held hostage by union leaders demanding unreasonable and imprudent continuations of ruinous lockdown policies.” 

This guy has made it obvious that he’s anti-public education.  Oftentimes, however, you have to dig a little deeper to figure that out. Most politicians will at least give lip service to teachers and the value of public education. 

So we have an election ten weeks from today.  Don’t let the presidential election suck all of the oxygen out of the air.  As far as public education is concerned, the races for the state legislature matter more than anything else.  Our representatives in Washington influence public policy regarding public education but the folks we elect to represent us in Austin have a more immediate and direct impact. That’s where most of the funding comes from. That’s where the Education Code gets revised. 

I encourage you to use your citizenship toolbox. Find out who is running in your district and check out their views on public education.  It matters.


Tomorrow: True confessions