TSTA-Conroe hosted a very successful brunch Saturday, Oct. 30 at Denny’s in Conroe for members to meet the candidates for School Board. There were 4 out of 7 candidates in attendance with 23 members in audience. Vice President Jessica Powell moderated the event with timed questions and then opened the forum to the floor. Members asked superb questions and got some interesting responses. There were two candidates running who had interests in giving parents more control of curriculum and school planning as well as minimizing our district’s savings account to give back to tax-payers, regardless of CISD’s recognition as one of the most fiscally sound school districts in Texas. They both noted they would push for added transparency, including opening teacher records to parents (including employment and discipline records), as well as for added requirements for weekly parent phone contacts. Finally, both candidates (who belong to a local Tea-Party group as well as a county “watch-dog” organization) supported privatizing our custodial and maintenance staff, outsourcing these jobs to 3rd party businesses rather than maintaining our own staff. TSTA-Conroe was very concerned that they would win their respective positions and our members would suffer the consequences. In a highly conservative county, we knew these members were very popular, especially in the more affluent areas.
TSTA-Conroe members decided to endorse 2 candidates, one for each competitive position. We used Facebook, email and word of mouth to notify members, local educators and CISD parents of our endorsements. The response was positive and many community members reported back that they voted and they chose to ally with TSTA-Conroe. We are very happy to share both our endorsed candidates won last night’s election.
It was my first foray into local politics and I was grateful that TSTA could offer us the resources we needed to get our efforts organized. — Jessica Powell, TSTA-Conroe vice president