Embattled State Board of Education Chairman Don McLeroy has finally found a defender in the Texas Senate. Sort of. In a story on KUT radio this morning, Sen. Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound, gave something less than a full-throated endorsement of McLeroy’s competence as board chairman:
You’re talking about a chairman and a chairman’s ability to manage a meeting. I have had absolutely no indication that he hasn’t done a good job.
Well, first of all, the state’s English teachers might take issue with the claim that McLeroy presides over fair and even-handed meetings. (Is Sen. Nelson really prepared to defend McLeroy’s decision to cast aside two years of work by teachers on English-Language Arts standards and slide a never-before-seen draft under the hotel doors of his fellow board members hours before the final vote? — hat tip: Tony’s Curricublog.)
But the accuracy of this claim aside, is this really the best argument McLeroy’s defenders can muster — that he can manage a meeting? What a spectacularly low standard for a position that wields significant influence over the curriculum for 4.6 million schoolchildren (not to mention a multi-billion dollar Permanent School Fund).
If that’s all you’ve got, Sen. Nelson, we respectfully suggest that the state of Texas can do better by its children.