Texans for Public Education announces our participation in an initiative called The 25 x 25 Challenge. Taking President John F. Kennedy’s philosophy of setting a huge goal to bring out the best in others, we challenge the Texas Legislature to improve Texas’ ranking among the states for expenditures per student.
Currently, Ed Week ranks Texas as 48th in the nation for this statistic. That ranking is different than those quoted by most, but unlike other rankings, this one adjusts for regional economy differences to give a number which more accurately reflects the purchasing power of the dollars invested in each student. While that rank will certainly go up with the implementation of House Bill 3, it will not go up enough. We challenge the Texas Legislature to continue the work begun and propel Texas to average. Yes, average. We challenge the Legislature to figure out a revenue plan which will make Texas 25th in the nation in expenditures per student by the year 2025.
This is a huge, yet reasonable, challenge. We are not asking for number one in the nation. We aren’t asking for top ten. We are simply asking the Texas legislature to make Texas average. T4PE will be asking each candidate whether or not he or she approves of this initiative and will work toward it. Each candidate’s response will be posted in the research for our rankings.
We believe our legislature is finally paying attention, and we are thankful for what has been done, but the job is not finished. 25 by 25. That is the challenge. We challenge our legislators to move Texas to 25th in the nation by 2025.
Our children deserve their government to support them at least as much as another average US state. Ladies and gentlemen of the Texas House and Senate, the ball is in your court. Will you take up the challenge, or will you decide that there are priorities more important than our children?
Troy Reynolds is founder of Texans For Public Education.