AG Paxton sends letters to three Texas school districts he says are unlawfully electioneering

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton issued cease and desist letters to three Texas school districts he believes are participating in unlawful electioneering.

Brazosport, Lewisville and Holliday school districts all received warnings from Paxton Wednesday, condemning them for advocating specific candidates and policies to their staff— a violation of state law.

While school districts are free to promote engagement and help students with voter registration, Paxton says they are not allowed to use funds and other resources to promote or discourage voting for candidates, as these actions are a “clear violation of the Texas Election and Education Codes.”

The incident is just one more altercation in an ongoing struggle to determine the appropriate involvement of public education organizations in primary and general elections. For months, tensions between public education advocates and groups of conservatives have been high.

Much of the conflict can be attributed to a “culture of voting” resolution promoted by the civic engagement group, Texas Educators Vote (TEV). Following the urgings of TEV’s resolution, participating school districts were bussing teachers and students to voting booths for the March primaries.

In December, Sen. Paul Bettencourt, R-Houston, brought the actions of TEV to Paxton’s attention and Paxton deemed the act illegal. Now, the Texas Attorney General is calling out school officials for using public social media accounts and school money to promote certain policies and advocate for certain candidates.

As an example, The Texas Tribune cited Brazosport Superintendent, Danny Massey tweeting in support of Scott Milder — a Republican candidate for lieutenant governor and known public education advocate. Massey’s tweet was later retweeted by Brazoswood High School’s Twitter account.

Paxton responded to these actions in a statement, saying, “The electioneering of these school districts is unacceptable and a poor example of the civic responsibility, integrity, and honesty that Texas educators should model for our students.”

For detailed coverage on Texas Attorney General Paxton, visit our Paxton Under Fire series.


    • Stan Randall, when you get that bent out of shape over accurate criticism of states I’ve lived in, (including the one I’m from) I have to wonder why it’s the liberals that get called snowflakes. And from a bunch of xenophobes (you can Google the word) I find accusations of bigotry hilarious.

  1. He needs to send letters to colleges as well, professors seem to brain wash college students with the democratic agenda and forcing them to participate in their political agendas marching to get a grade. This happens at UTRGV Brownsville and TSC Brownsville as well as other RGV schools.

  2. Must have said something he didnt agree with. Supporting public schools and denouncing corporate schools is a good thing. I gautentee if these schools followed his agenda theu could have painted the walls.

  3. The letter has been sent all over Texas. This is Patrick , Abbots and Paxton’s way to scare teacher into not voting. Sounds very unconstitutional! It should be eye opening to all Texans.

    • Yes, looks just like another form of soft voter suppression. On the other hand, why would any school/district have a twitter account with anything except official business on it. Keep personal and official accounts separate.

    • Oliver Frazier not all had twitter accounts and it’s more than just three districts. I wonder if they would send the same letter if they were supporting Abbot and Dan Patrick.🤔

  4. The teachers can’t strike. Or walk out without being fired as a group I wonder how many of these people comments. If the went to a university. For 4. Maybe 5 years. Then paid that out of there pocket would take work home and do it and on weekend. To get ready to smile and teacher our kids with the pay they get now and in the future. If left up to the state of texas no. Social security. And for a lot of teacher no raise for several years. After having a four year degree. As yourself. Would you do it. Just for notes my wife is a teacher. There is no way you could do it on one income.

  5. Hard as it is for me to say this—the Texas AG is right to say that public schools ought not do this. I would go further and say that any school or institution that receives government support (by which I mean direct financial support for operations, tax exemptions, and the like) should be subject to the same restrictions.

  6. And what of Klein Isd supplying office space, phone, computers, and personnel to the Klein Education Foundation at no cost, which then turns around and endorses candidates and campaigns to pass school bonds? How is that not illegal?

    • Atleast thats all thats going on. Over here in Marble Falls they are redirecting te sales tax in the city and give it to a private company run by a man that is not an elected official to do with as he pleases. When you go try to talk to them the first thing Christian Fletcher does is look to see how much you pay in property tax. Thats what decides if your vote counts.

  7. No electioneering just teaching our kids what they need to know.

    Paxton know what will happen if more Texans hit the polls. He is a sucky AG especially without Obama to sue all the time.

    • So, the sheriff in my county can use his fb page for electioneering, county funds to pay for an employment sign but have his name and picture taking up half of it during election, our teachers are supposed to not only teach but die or play armed guards and clergy as some ignorant parents are too lazy and inept to instill their values and beliefs and expect teachers to do so… But Paxton bitches about them possibly having a political perspective!!?? Hahaha Sounds like little snowflake Paxton is skerd….

    • Traceymarie Harrison . The school districts’ money and resources should not be used to transport anyone to vote. It’s not an appropriate use of funds. How would that expenditure be categorized?

    • Kim Goynes actually in our school the PTA pays for field trips. The school provides the transportation.

      So should we pay for a field trip to the polls? Schools are supposed to give our children some of the tools they will need in the future.

      Paxton’s opinion said school districts can’t pay to drive kids to polling places “absent an educational purpose

      Learning to vote is NOT educational? Please

      What is wrong with this picture?
      Active shooter training? ✅

      Civics and voting? ❌
      Accurate sex and birth control education? ❌


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