Why You Should Attend the District 121 Candidate Forum

Posted on April 17, 2018

By Adanary Galindo

Any time I see an elected official, I tell them that I am a public charter school parent. I want them to know that I am actively voting and keeping up with the issues that they are voting on. Public charter school parents are watching you and we are going to hold you accountable. You are making decisions that are affecting my family.

That’s why I’m going to the House District 121 Candidate Forum, and you should, too. This is an opportunity to hear the candidates say, in their own words, where they stand on issues affecting public charter schools and public education.

At the candidate forum, parents will be able to ask questions. This is our opportunity to share our stories with the candidates. It’s a conversation where parents are encouraged to speak their minds. The candidates are coming to US in OUR space to listen to OUR concerns. So we need to show up!

I’m glad they are coming to the Great Hearts Northern Oaks campus. Not every public charter school has a new facility like that. My daughters go to Great Hearts Monte Vista which, like many public charter schools, is located in rented space. We don’t have a library or a playground structure.

There are two Republican candidates, Steve Allison and Matt Beebe, competing in the runoff election on May 22. These candidates were separated by only 467 votes in the March primary. Typically, voter turnout in runoff elections is low, so every vote counts!

One of these candidates will be running in the general election in November. In 2019, the Texas Legislature will decide all kinds of issues that affect our public charter schools. A big issue will be funding for public charter schools. In 2017, public charter schools received facilities funding for the first time ever, but the 2019 legislature has the power to take that away, unless public charter school parents speak up and show up.

We need a representative in the legislature who can relate to the challenges that public charter school parents face. We are trying to build a strong school community, but there is uncertainty about where our campus will be located in the future. There are hundreds of students on the waiting list at my kid's school, and uncertainty about when and where more campuses will open.

My husband and I are teaching our kids to stand up for what they believe in. Whenever I vote, I take my kids with me so they can see me voting. Our family is always looking for opportunities to advocate, even when we are on a family vacation in Washington, D.C.

For the candidate forum, we don’t have to travel anywhere—they’re coming to us! That makes sense: there are more than 1,300 public charter school students living in House District 121. Even more students in the district are on waiting lists to enroll at a public charter school.

When it comes time to ask questions at the candidate forum, I will share my point of view and tell my story about why we chose a public charter school.

The candidates that we vote into office will make important decisions that affect us, our families, and our community. We must weigh in!

***

Adanary Galindo is the mother of three girls at Great Hearts Monte Vista, a public charter school in San Antonio, Texas. Adanary is a Realtor and serves on the Equal Opportunity in Housing Advisory Group and the Public Education Subcommittee of the San Antonio Board of Realtors (SABOR), but the opinions expressed here are her own, not necessarily those of SABOR. Her favorite Fiesta San Antonio event is the River Parade.

 ***

The views expressed in this blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of TX Charter Revolution