State Rep. Victoria Neave (D-Dallas) declared that improving the state’s public education systems is one of her top priorities this legislative session.
“Our economic prosperity as a state is directly linked to the education of our kids,” Neave said in an interview with WFAA. “It’s directly linked to the strength of our workforce.”
Neave voiced tepid support for state leaders’ pledge to use the $27 billion surplus in taxpayer money to reduce property taxes.
The attorney instead suggested that some of the money should be spent on increasing teacher pay and dealing with college affordability for low-income students.
“Certainly, the budget surplus is going to be a big priority, making sure those dollars are being invested in places that make sense for our Texas economy, that make sense for Texas families, and that helps alleviate property taxes as well,” Neave said.
The first in her family to attend college, Neave stressed the importance of quality public education in maintaining Texas’ current draw for out-of-state companies.
“Businesses want to make sure that we are graduating students who are either college-ready or have the skills necessary to enter the workforce,” Neave told WFAA.
Neave’s district includes parts of East Dallas, Mesquite, and South Garland.
The Dallas Express reached out to Neave and asked whether Dallas ISD’s recent performance with regard to student achievement was a motivating factor in her priorities this session but did not hear back by press time.
As previously reported in The Dallas Express, the district’s academic performance dragged Dallas County down in Texas metro school rankings, with nearly 20% of its Class of 2022 failing to graduate on time and only 41% of students scoring at grade level on last year’s STAAR exam.
A recent poll by The Dallas Express found that a plurality of respondents believe “mismanagement” by DISD’s Board of Trustees is to blame for the district’s dismal student outcomes.