Equity in school funding levels the playing field, promotes equal opportunity for all Texas school children

Chandra Villanueva

As we wait for the district court’s final ruling on the Texas school finance system lawsuit, new numbers show more than five million school children are being educated under a system that values some students more than others. Texas is a growing and changing state. In the past 10 years, the student population of Texas has […]

Join Us In Welcoming Oliver Bernstein As Our New Communications Director

We are thrilled to announce that Oliver Bernstein will be joining the Center for Public Policy Priorities in mid-April as Communications Director. A fluent Spanish speaker who has lived and worked along the Texas-Mexico border and nationally, Oliver brings more than nine years of  communications experience to CPPP. He most recently directed a grassroots communications […]

House Interim Charges Don’t Go Far Enough on Public Ed Funding

Chandra Villanueva

At the end of January, the first list of interim charges for House committees was released by the Speaker of the House. Appropriations, the budget-writing committee of the House, was given a charge to conduct a basic review of the public education funding formulas and specifically if items funded outside of the formulas should be […]

From the Courtroom: School Finance Trial Day 1

Chandra Villanueva

Last year the Texas school finance system was ruled unconstitutional on the grounds that it is inadequate, inequitable, and inefficient. This week, State District Judge John Dietz has reopened evidence in the case to determine if actions made by the 2013 Texas Legislature resulted in any substantial changes to the school finance system. The primary […]

Thousands of Texans to lose unemployment insurance this holiday season

CPPP Leslie Helmcamp

This holiday, tens of thousands of Texans will lose unemployment insurance (UI) if Congress fails to extend federal benefits for workers unemployed for more than six months. Cutting off support will hurt Texas families and businesses as thousands of Texans will have fewer resources to cover their basic household expenses throughout 2014. During the Great […]

Report Finds Majority of TX Public School Kids Are Low-Income

Chandra Villanueva

The Southern Education Foundation’s new report, A New Majority: Low Income Students in the South and Nation, brings attention to the fact that 48 percent of all school children across the nation live in low-income households (measured by the number of students who qualify for free or reduced price school lunch). In 17 states, clustered […]

Grade Inflation–Details of S&P’s report giving Texas a AAA Credit Rating

Dick Lavine, Senior Fiscal Analyst at the Center for Public Policy Priorities

Standard & Poor’s (S&P), the leading national credit rating firm, recently raised Texas’ general-obligation bond rating to AAA – the highest rating.  Unsurprisingly, the governor and other elected officials hailed this upgrade as vindication of recent legislative tax and budget decisions. But reading the fine print shows that Texas’ revenue system has serious flaws and […]

SNAP Under Attack On Multiple Fronts

Working for a Better Texas

By Jeanie Donovan Federal lawmakers have been debating the reauthorization of the Farm Bill for more than two years now. The SNAP program, formerly known as food stamps, has been central in that debate.  During this drawn out reauthorization process, House members’ proposals to cut SNAP have grown in size and harmfulness. On top of […]

Greetings from Ann Beeson, CPPP’s New Executive Director

Working for a Better Texas

Greetings! I am truly delighted to be the new Executive Director of the Center for Public Policy Priorities. I am very proud to be a Texan. We have so much to build on – the best culture anywhere, a fierce sense of pride, thriving cities, an innovative spirit. I believe in a future for our […]

Sizing Up the Texas Budget: Student Financial Aid

CPPP Leslie Helmcamp

Jordan dreamt of being the first in her family to graduate from college. But she never imagined that dream would come at a cost of more than $20,000 in student debt while working two jobs and attending school full time. Each year, more than 40,000 economically disadvantaged high school seniors enroll in Texas colleges. And […]