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8.5% is the arbitrary benchmark rate set by the Texas Education Agency for the number of Special Education Students in a school district that may receive Special Education.  Even children with severe disabilities, including deafness and blindness, can't always get special education. 

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Stand Up Sunday is Here!

Stand Up Sunday is HERE!


July 28th is "Stand up Sunday"! Churches all over Harris County will be collecting signatures to help Harris County toddlers get the head start they need to succeed in school. Only three days left to go to the big event and we need your help!

Photos from Wheeler Baptist Church on July 21st where we collected over 350 signatures for the Early to Rise Ballot Initiative! 


Be sure and join us this Sunday for "Stand Up Sunday" where churches all over the city will be taking part. Contact us if your church would like to participate. Call us at (713) 782-8833 or email us:

Here's a list of some of our participating churches:

Harris County's Toddlers need you now!


Early to Rise is a program designed to help young children up to age 5 get ready for Kindergarten through increasing the quality of early childhood education in Harris County. We are working to get on the ballot in November 2013 a proposition for a 1 penny increase per $100 of assessed home value with the funds dedicated exclusively to early education in Harris County. This tiny increase would average out to about $18 a year for a $180,000 home. Our children and our future are certainly worth this investment!

They need high quality early education to be ready to learn and succeed in life. We have an opportunity to deliver for them by getting 78,000 petitions by early August to place the Early to Rise Measure on the November 2013 ballot.. We need you to help collect petitions from your congregation, friends, or at events. Please call Eva Calvillo at Texans Together at 713-782-8833 or email Eva Calvillo. You can download the petition HERE with instructions and learn more HERE. Please get involved now!

Texas Ranks Among Lowest in Nation for Political Participation

Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life report evaluates state’s civic health and provides recommendations

AUSTIN, Texas – June 4, 2013 – On the heels of the 83rd Legislative Session, the Annette Strauss Institute for Civic Life at The University of Texas at Austin and the National Conference on Citizenship today released the Texas Civic Health Index, the first nonpartisan, comprehensive evaluation of community and political engagement in Texas.

Following a session in which a large number of bills were passed affecting the lives of all Texans, the study found that Texas has one of the nation’s lowest political and civic participation rates.

“This report should be a wake-up call for all Texans who care about the future of our state,” said Annette Strauss Institute Director and Journalism Professor Regina Lawrence. “By not being civically engaged, too many Texans are ceding control over the direction of our state to an active few. We hope the findings in the Texas Civic Health Index will spur conversation and debate, and inspire people to become more actively engaged.”

California reveals prices for health insurance under Obamacare

(Interesting Article from Reuters: Texas might be different but this shows what we COULD have if Governor Perry choose cooperation instead of confrontation.)

By Sharon Bernstein | Reuters

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - California unveiled prices on Thursday that consumers will pay for a selection of health plans offered through the state under the Affordable Care Act, providing a glimpse into how health care reform may look as it is rolled out across the nation.

Under the federal health care reform law, Californians who do not get or cannot afford health insurance through their jobs can buy coverage through an exchange, at a group rate negotiated by state regulators.

The cost to a 40-year-old who needs coverage would vary from about $40 to $300 per month for a mid-level plan, depending on the person's income. Some young adults, who are less expensive to cover, could pay nothing, depending on how much they earn.

The Banks, The Congress and What the SEC Saw


View From the Cheap Seats

The Banks, The Congress and What the SEC Saw

Well, the banks and other big businesses continue to do their very best to avoid oversight and dodge accountability. Our corporate “citizens” spend huge amounts of money on undisclosed political contributions and on Washington lobbyists to make sure that none of their misdeeds are noticed or punished.

The SEC is considering a rule change that says that corporations must disclose to their stockholders what political contributions they have made to their stockholders. The idea is that stockholder’s have a right to know how their money is being spent. Indeed, in the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United, written by Justice Anthony M. Kennedy cleared the way for unlimited corporate expenditures in campaigns, Justice Kennedy suggested that “shareholder objections raised through the procedures of corporate democracy” could provide accountability for the new political powers. The SEC has received over half a million signatures, notes and emails urging them to adopt this rule, the most ever for an SEC rule.

Mother's Day at Linda Vista!

This past Friday, the Linda Vista Resource Center hosted our first truly resident planned and led program. It was a Mother's Day Card Making Party in collaboration with the Foster Family YMCA program at Linda Vista, and we had about 25 kids in attendance with eight community member volunteers running the program. Everyone had a great time and some of the cards made were sure to charm any mother's heart. This comes after two months of resident meetings which have established the center, coordinated the launch event, and planned for more events this month and in June.


S.E.C. Is Asked to Require Disclosure of Donations

From The New York Times

Fight Over Political Donations: The Securities and Exchange Commission has been flooded with calls to require publicly traded corporations to disclose to shareholders all of their political donations.



A loose coalition of Democratic elected officials, shareholder activists and pension funds has flooded the Securities and Exchange Commission with calls to require publicly traded corporations to disclose to shareholders all of their political donations, a move that could transform the growing world of secret

S.E.C. officials have indicated that they could propose a new disclosure rule by the end of April, setting up a major battle with business groups that oppose the proposal and are preparing for a fierce counterattack if the agency’s staff moves ahead. Two S.E.C. commissioners have taken the unusual step of weighing in already, with Daniel Gallagher, a Republican, saying in a speech that the commission had been “led astray” by “politically charged issues.”

A petition to the S.E.C. asking it to issue the rule has already garnered close to half a million comments, far more than any petition or rule in the agency’s history, with the vast majority in favor of it. While relatively few petitions result in action by the S.E.C., the commission staff filed a notice late last year indicating that it was considering recommending a rule.

Linda Vista Resource Center Launch Party

And Now, A Few Words…

Hi everyone!  I am sorry you couldn't make it to the Linda Vista's Apartments as Communities' opening on Saturday. Over two hundred adult residents signed in between 12-4 pm and there were many kids. We had 10 volunteers from the Mint Apartments come to the opening to discuss their work with the Linda Vista residents, and a dozen Linda Vista residents helped us run the event. There was lots of enthusiasm and ideas. The apartment management was surprised at the turnout and energy. There were a number of booths, from signing people up for Medicaid and CHIP, to promoting healthy living, to registering people to vote. There are 24 photos of the event on our Facebook page. See https://www.facebook.com/TexansTogetherEF (second item from the top)


Local Boys Do Good!

Texans Together Education Fund Alief Organizers Brendan Laws and Francisco Garcia received the Alief YMCA 2013 Partners Campaign "Partner in Social Responsibility" award. They have been recognized for their outstanding work in Voter Registration drives, Kaboom playground build, Pre-teen social justice workshops, creating the Alief Leaders Coalition, Apartments Are Communities project, and engagement of youth on local community issues.

In addition, they have been active in our Got Coverage?, Occupy the Vote and our Save Texas school campaigns. They are always ready to lend a hand and represent the best in community organizing. We thank the YMCA for being outstanding supporters of Texans Together Education Fund and congratulate both Franciso Garcia and Brendan Laws for this outstanding achievement.



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Texans Together Education Fund

P.O. Box 1296
Houston, Texas 77251-1296



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by Dr. Radut