African-American and Hispanic state legislators — among the many parties aggrieved by the State Board of Education's highly contested rewriting of social studies standards — announced today they will hold their own separate hearing, unleashing a new torrent of public comment on what might now be the most debated issue in Texas.
The April 28 hearing won't produce any official action, but its organizers hope it will prove a powerful political statement on what many minority advocates have called a "whitewash" of history by a near-majority bloc of social conservatives on the board. Here's the full release:
MALC teams up with Legislative Study Group, House Black Caucus and Senate Hispanic Caucus for State Board of Education Special Hearing
Trey Martinez Fischer, Chairman of the Mexican American Legislative Caucus, announced his partnership with the Legislative Study Group, House Black Caucus and Senate Hispanic Caucus for a Special Hearing into the State Board of Education.
“With twenty-one members of the Texas House and Senate scheduled attend, I think we are sending a definitive message to the State Board of Education--- either they operate within the confines of statute or be ready to explain to the Legislature why not” said Martinez Fischer.
The hearing, which will take placed on April 28, 2010 from 9am-3pm in the Capitol Extension E2.012, will include invited testimony from over twenty respected university-level academics, teacher’s groups, public school educators and publishing groups as well as State Board of Education member-elect Thomas Ratliffe. The findings from the Special Hearing will published as a white paper and presented to the SBOE at their May 19, 2010 meeting.
State Board of Education Chairwoman Gail Lowe and Texas Education Agency Commissioner Robert Scott have been invited to attend and speak the hearing.
Members Confirmed to Attend:
Trey Martinez Fischer, MALC Chair
Abel Herrero, MALC Vice Chair & LSG Board Member
Solomon Ortiz, Jr., Secretary
Diana Maldonado, Treasurer
Rafael Anchia, LSG Secretary
Lon Burnam, LSG Vice Chairman
Pete Gallego, LSG Board Member
Barbara Mallory Carroway
Tara Rios Ybarra
Eddie Rodriguez, LSG Board Member
Sylvester Turner, House Black Caucus Chair
Carlos Uresti, Senate Hispanic Caucus Chair