Seven people have filed to run for four open Houston ISD trustee positions, roles that currently do not have any oversight of the district following the Texas Education Agency’s takeover.
The TEA appointed nine people in June to the new Board of Managers, who now serve as the district’s school board instead of the nine elected HISD trustees. However, local elections for the elected trustees in Districts II, III, IV and VIII will still be held as scheduled on Nov. 7.
The elected trustees currently serve in an advisory capacity, although a third of them could replace a third of the unelected members of the Board of Managers at least two years following the beginning of the takeover if the district meets certain exit criteria, including acceptable academic performance ratings.
All of the elected trustees would gradually resume full control after two more years once the transition begins, according to a timeline from the TEA.
Some candidates said they are running to be an HISD trustee despite the takeover because they want to help manage the district once the state eventually gives power back to the elected board. They also say they can still make a difference as district representatives by hearing constituent concerns and informing community members about policy decisions.
Three incumbent HISD trustees — Kathy Blueford-Daniels, Dani Hernandez and Patricia Allen — are all running for another four-year term, each against a single challenger.
Trustee Judith Cruz told the Houston Chronicle Tuesday that she is not running again for her seat in District 8. Former teacher Placido Gomez is running unopposed for her current position.
All of these people except one, the person who filed against Kathy Blueford-Daniels in District II, were mentioned in my post about the HISD July finance reports. I will remind you that the opponents to Dani Hernandez and Patricia Allen are self-proclaimed “parental rights” advocates, and the one running against Hernandez is (or was, not clear from the story) a GOP precinct chair. Forewarned and forearmed, y’all. I will be publishing interviews with Blueford-Daniels, Hernandez, Judith Cruz, and Placido Gomez next week, so look for those. And make sure you and your friends all vote in these elections.