Targeting Advocacy Efforts: The SBOE

Besides legislators at the state and federal levels, the State Board of Education (SBOE) should also be a target of local school board members’ advocacy efforts.

One way you can keep the SBOE sensitive to the needs of local school districts is to work to elect men and women who share your views on public education. Not only will they help support your values and beliefs, but also once in office, your involvement in their campaigns will give you access to them, making you a more effective advocate for Texas schools.

After your candidate is elected, continue to keep in touch. Don’t be afraid to use your influence and take advantage of your access. Your support is part of the reason the candidate was elected.

Of course, many of the guidelines for communicating with legislators also apply to SBOE members, but here are some additional tips:

  • Keep in contact with your SBOE member. Don’t hesitate to call when you need help or if you disagree with his or her position on a school issue. It’s also important to thank them for something they’ve done or just to let them know they are doing a good job.
  • Invite your SBOE member to attend a local school board meeting or a school activity as a way to keep in touch and to remind him or her of the good job the schools are doing.
  • Take advantage of the opportunity to speak to all SBOE members when time is scheduled for citizens to address the board at regular SBOE meetings.
  • Bring 25 copies of your statement for distribution to all SBOE members and executive staff. Double check to make sure the statement includes no grammatical or spelling errors. The written testimony should not exceed three pages of double-spaced text. Be sure to include your name, the date, and the name of your school district.