Dallas is going to elect a new mayor this weekend. Voters in Texas’s third-largest city have a huge slate of candidates from which to choose.
I’ve heard TV ads from at least three of them say something quite unusual for candidates for municipal office.
They vow to “strengthen” Dallas’s schools. My reaction is a simple one: Huh?
I covered a lot of mayoral and city council races over many years working for newspapers in Oregon and Texas. I’ve never heard a sound from any of those municipal candidates say a word about public education.
Why do you suppose that is? I have a thought: It’s because school policy ain’t their concern.
So, what am I missing here as I listen to these Dallas mayoral candidates vow to shore up Dallas schools?
The Dallas Independent School District elects a board of trustees to do that work on behalf of children and their parents. Yes, I am aware on the edges of the problems concerning DISD and some of the financial woes that have bedeviled the district.
The TV ads from these mayoral candidates make no specific mention of those woes. They merely declare candidates’ intention to create better educational environment.
If that includes strengthening law enforcement presence on school campuses, or if it means providing clean water, or providing good lighting on public streets surrounding these schools, then . . . fine! Go for it!
Setting school policy and implementing it is the sole province of, um, independent public school systems.