Earlier today, state Sen. Bob Deuell, R-Greenville, the chair of the Senate Nominations Committee, told the Texas Tribune that while Lowe could survive a hearing in the nominations committee, she is not likely to have enough votes to be confirmed by the full Senate. Sen. Deuell said to the Tribune:
“Why go through a committee meeting, which can be uncomfortable, if she doesn’t have enough votes to be confirmed?”
Lowe was appointed chairwoman in 2009 after Gov. Perry’s nomination of Don McLeroy, R-College Station, died in the Senate. Lowe’s tenure has been marred by culture war controversies, most notably the battle over social studies curriculum standards that she continues to defend despite almost universal condemnation by scholars and a damning grade of “D” from the conservative-leaning Fordham Institute.
Unfortunately, those controversies didn’t stop Gov. Perry from nominating her for another two-year term as chairwoman this year. But now Sen. Deuell’s public doubts that Lowe can be confirmed should send a clear message to the governor that the board needs new and more responsible leadership.
In response to Sen. Deuell’s comments, we released the following statement from Texas Freedom Network President Kathy Miller:
TFN PRESIDENT KATHY MILLER: NEW LEADERSHIP NEEDED ON STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION
Sen. Deuell’s Statement That Lowe Lacks Votes for Confirmation as Chair Is Good News for Texas Schoolchildren
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 11, 2011
Texas Freedom Network President Kathy Miller is releasing the following statement in response to a report in the Texas Tribune today that Senate Nominations Committee Chairman Bob Deuell believes Gail Lowe does not have the votes to be confirmed as chairwoman of the State Board of Education.
“We’re pleased to see senators recognize that the state board needs new leadership that will finally put the education of Texas schoolchildren ahead of personal and political agendas. Unfortunately, Ms. Lowe has done nothing to bring an end to the unnecessary and divisive culture war battles that have dominated the board’s work and turned education in Texas into a punch line in national jokes. And the first act of a new chairperson should be to have board members reconsider the recklessly politicized social studies standards they burdened our classroom teachers and students with last year.”