Much has been made of Mayor Mike Rawlings' foray into Dallas Independent School District politics in recent months. Depending on who's talking, his involvement is either the leadership and commitment this city needs to save its schools; another sign of the business community's hostile takeover of those schools; or a thing that's happening that won't have much impact at all on those schools.
In fact, it's probably a cocktail of all three, with a splash of whiskey because it's past noon. Whatever it is, Rawlings isn't being shy about it. According to a press release just sent out by Educate Dallas, the Dallas Regional Chamber's new schools-focused political action committee, Rawlings is prepared to announce endorsements in all three trustee races, throwing his support behind the same candidates already picked by the PAC: Elizabeth Jones (District 1), Dan Micciche (District ), and Bernadette Nutall (District 9).
"The Board of Trustees has recently been able to pass several progressive reforms that will result in higher educational outcomes for our kids, but we still have a long way to go, and we need courageous leaders that are willing to continue to push the district forward," Rawlings said, according to the release. "It's clear to me that Dan, Elizabeth and Trustee Nutall are all focused on doing what is best for our children, and that each of them have the experience and skills necessary to be successful."
Full release follows, should you be so inclined. Perhaps we'll follow up later with Damarcus Offord's inevitable rebuttal.
Update: As Big Bob points out, the city's code of ethics prohibits Mayor Rawlings from endorsing candidates. But it somehow doesn't prohibit Citizen Rawlings. Which is why, you'll notice, the press release doesn't include the word "mayor" in it. How cute. And completely asinine.
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DALLAS, TEXAS - Mike Rawlings announced plans today to endorse candidates Elizabeth Jones (District 1), Dan Micciche (District ), and Bernadette Nutall (District 9) for the 2012 Dallas ISD school board elections."These three candidates represent exactly the kind of high-caliber leaders we need on the Dallas ISD school board," said Rawlings. "Improving our public education system is the most important thing we can do as a community to ensure the vitality of our city in the future. The Board of Trustees has recently been able to pass several progressive reforms that will result inhigher educational outcomes for our kids, but we still have a long way to go, and we need courageous leaders that are willing to continue to push the district forward. It's clear to me that Dan, Elizabeth and Trustee Nutall are all focused on doing what is best for our children, and that each of them have the experience and skills necessary to be successful. There are 157,000 students in this city counting on us to get it right. I am confident these three leaders will be a part of fulfilling that promise to our kids."Rawlings' endorsements come just less than three weeks before the highly-contested May 12 elections."Dallas is incredibly fortunate to have community leaders like Mike Rawlings who recognize that every citizen has a role to play when it comes to the success of our public education system," said EducateDallas Co-Chairman Mark Melton. "The community in general, and the diverse communities within it, are demanding a new era of public education based on accountability,transparency and decision-making that puts the interests of kids over those of adults. It will take extraordinary leadership to attain the results that we owe to our city's children, and Mr. Rawlings' invaluable endorsement speaks volumes about the quality of leadership these three candidates embody."The gravity of this year's school board elections has been evidenced by the large number of important endorsements received among the field of candidates. "There is great interest in these elections, and many organizations, private citizens and public officials are taking courageous stances with regard to school board candidates," said incoming EducateDallas Chairwoman Jill Louis.Candidates Micciche and Jones, as well as Trustee Nutall, have also been endorsed by numerous other organizations and individuals over the last few weeks. "In addition to Rawlings' endorsement, we have also been excited to see such a large consensus of important endorsements coalesce around our three endorsed candidates. It's great to see Dallas rally behind a common cause and support great leadership for our school district," said Louis.Rawlings is expected to make a formal announcement tonight at an EducateDallas "Meet the Candidates" event.For more information, visit the EducateDallas website at www.EducateDallas.org, or contact Trisha Windham at firstname.lastname@example.org.