Texas State Board of Education member Cynthia Dunbar has now released a statement explaining that she will not seek re-election to her seat next year. She used her announcement to endorse Brian Russell, an Austin attorney and State Republican Executive Committee member, as her replacement. Russell has already announced his intention to seek the seat and said Dunbar recruited him.
From Dunbar’s announcement:
“I promised them that I would be a statesman and not a career politician and that I would get in, get the job done and get out. That is exactly what I have done. I know it is common for politicians to make that promise and then conveniently forget it once they have reached the ranks of popularity and incumbent security. However, I am satisfied that I have been effective in accomplishing all that I had promised and I intend to keep my word to my constituents. I have kept my finger on the pulse of my district, which has enabled me to know what they ultimately want and I have not been deterred by minority opposition.”
We’re unsure what job Dunbar thinks she finished. She has spent her four years on the board dumbing curriculum standards with political nonsense. But battles over how those standards are implemented in new science and social studies textbooks won’t come until 2011, at the earliest.
That’s one reason why Dunbar’s departure from the board after next year will represent an important victory for Texas families who want their children to get a sound education, not right-wing political indoctrination, in their public school classrooms. Still, Russell is cut much from the same cloth as Dunbar. His presence on the board would help ensure that our public schools remain in the crossfire of the religious right’s divisive culture wars. That means the 2010 elections are still very important.