5.27.22 – The Federalist

"Texas Becomes 23rd State To Exit National School Boards Association”
By Chuck DeVore


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[COMMENTS FROM DONNA GARNER: For almost two years while I was still teaching in the public schools, I decided on my own that I wanted to know exactly what was said and done at my local school board meetings so that I could report the facts back to the teachers and the public. During those two years, I only missed one local school board meeting, and I stayed from the beginning to the end of each (while I graded my nightly papers.)   

During that time, I heard countless examples of TASB’s (Texas Association of School Boards) and TASA’s (Texas Association of School Administrators) interpretations and misinterpretations of various education laws.

On one occasion, I went back to the Texas legislator who actually wrote a particular, new, education law and had helped to get it passed.

The new law had to do with the make-up of a committee which was supposed to have a majority of classroom teachers on it rather than administrators. The law had to do with classroom discipline. The legislator said he wanted to have a majority of classroom teachers on the committee because they work directly with students in classrooms and know them the best.

TASB and TASA were telling administrators/school boards all over the state that the committee was to have more administrators than teachers on the committee, and that was the “misinterpretation” that the administration shared at my local school board meeting! 

The Texas Senator was furious and told me, “We pass the laws; the schools sit there and do nothing. They wait until TASB/TASA interprets (or misinterprets) the laws for them. Then the administrators implement them according to the way TASB/TASA directs. In essence, TASB/TASA think they are making the laws. I have news for them. That is not so.”

Over the years, TASB and TASA have become the voice; and classroom teachers have been silenced.

TASB and TASA both require “dues,” and those dues come from the taxpayers’ pockets. Then TASB (and undoubtedly TASA) use those dues to pay for big-time lobbyists who go to Austin and lobby the Texas legislature for more school funding.

That funding, of course, has to come from the taxpayers’ pockets.


If classroom teachers want to belong to their professional teachers’ organizations, they have to pay for their own dues and convention expenses.  The same thing should hold true for school boards and administrators.

If school board members and administrators want to belong to TASA/TASB, they should pay their own way.]


The Federalist Article:

The Texas Association of School Boards (TASB) finally left the National School Boards Association (NSBA), the 23rd state to do so. The exit happened hours after news broke that the NSBA had planned to request that the Biden administration invoke the Insurrection Act to federalize Army National Guard troops and deploy them to intimidate parents trying to exercise their First Amendment right to petition redress of grievances at school board meetings.

The NSBA didn’t cite the Insurrection Act in its draft request for National Guard troops to Attorney General Merrick Garland, but that act is the only legal option for a president to take command of a state’s National Guard to restore public order.

That Texas’s [Texas Association of School Boards -- TASB] NSBA affiliate would be among the last to sever ties with the organization might seem counterintuitive to a non-Texan. But Texas school boards, as in much of the nation, skew left of the general population.

TASB’s tardy exit was likely hastened by election results on May 7, when conservatives won dozens of school board races against pro-mask incumbents who denied that explicit material is in libraries, as well as the existence of lesson plans based on critical race theory.

The most high-profile loss for TASB was by Jim Rice, TASB’s immediate past president and a 12-year veteran of the Fort Bend Independent School District.
Left Seeks to Stifle Dissent with Force

The latest revelation from NSBA’s efforts to bring in the federal government for school board meetings betrays a troubling and dangerous trend of the left seeking to stifle peaceful dissent with the power of government or threats of violence.

In NSBA’s case, the letter they did send to the Biden administration on Sept. 29 of last year claimed that heated public comments at school board meetings amounted to “acts of malice, violence, and threats against public school officials.” They also claimed this was sufficiently “heinous” as to be “a form of domestic terrorism and hate crimes” subject to enforcement under the Patriot Act or other laws.  

Less than a week later, the NSBA letter sparked an order by Attorney General Merrick Garland detailing the FBI to investigate alleged threats against school boards — diverting agents from more important work, such as stopping mass murderers…

Parents Respond

In an interview, Christopher Zook, president of Texans for Educational Freedom, a PAC backing conservatives in school board races in Texas, commented, “When a national organization like NSBA labeled parents as domestic terrorists, they revealed their true intent. NSBA took the first shot, and parents responded.”

Noting the electoral victories for conservative school board candidates, Zook said, “The biggest mistake any person can make is to get between a momma (and poppa) and her cubs, and that is exactly what NSBA did. These recent school board elections continue to show that parents will not stand for radical indoctrination in our classrooms.”

James Quintero, a policy director with the Texas Public Policy Foundation (where I also work), told me that, “On the ground, school boards are engaged in all sorts of bad behavior, like demanding staff vote for bonds and threatening consequences if they don’t, and spreading disinformation related to new debt and tax rates. At the legislature, special interest groups, like TASB, go all out to defeat conservative attempts to stop these practices with legislation.”

According to IRS filings, TASB brought in $78.3 million in revenue in 2020, virtually all of it from taxpayers in the form of payments from school districts. James Crow, TASB’s executive director, pulled down $1.1 million in 2019 (a legislative session year) and $448,418 in 2020. TASB had 10 employees making $250,000 or more in 2020.

By pulling out of its national affiliate, NSBA, TASB likely believes that its member boards across Texas will be less inclined to leave TASB, thus preserving millions of dollars of taxpayer-funded fee revenue.

Even so, TASB’s considerable clout in the Texas legislature will take a hit in the upcoming 2023 legislative session, especially as several teachers’ union-backed Republican candidates lost their runoff elections on May 24 to more conservative challengers.

Analyzing the runoffs, Zook said, “This week’s elections go to show Texans want a more conservative legislature. People do not want radical indoctrination in our schools, and TASB has now come to the realization they lost some allies to more conservative challengers. TASB is finally coming to terms that they cannot get away with their radical policies any longer…their actions have consequences.”


12.9.21 – “Lawmakers Let Liberal School Boards Lobby Against Texans on Taxpayers’ Dime” – by Erin Anderson -- Texas Scorecard -- https://texasscorecard.com/state/lawmakers-let-liberal-school-boards-lobby-against-texans-on-taxpayers-dime/

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