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Editorial: It Doesn’t Take a Genius to Figure Out What Poor Texas Schools Need

A new editorial in the Corpus Christi Caller-Times notes that more than 60 percent of Texas schoolchildren are economically disadvantaged. It also noted a strong connection between household income levels and the grades of local schools in the state’s new accountability system. Schools with more disadvantaged students were much more likely to get Ds or Fs in the system.

The state has considered tying school funding to student performance, which would reward the best-performing schools. While incentives for teachers sometimes work, incentives for schools would do little to improve the performance of struggling schools. “…If you incentivize school performance…you make the rich schools richer when the poor schools are the ones that need the help. If your roof leaks, do you withhold money for a new one until the old one stops leaking?” the editorial reads.

The authors credit the Legislature for increasing education spending but note that there are no assurances that the new funding represents a new path. “The first statistic we cited—more than 60 percent of Texas schoolchildren are economically disadvantaged—is why we can’t afford for it to be a one-time thing,” the editorial states.

“Not replacing a roof ruins a house. This doesn’t take an Einstein to explain or understand. Putting more money into schools that need it is an investment Texas can’t afford not to make,” the editorial concludes.

Read “It doesn’t take a genius to figure out what poor Texas schools need,” Corpus Christi Caller-Times.

September 10, 2019