PHARR, RGV – The business community of the Rio Grande Valley has been praised for the key role it played in persuading the Texas legislature to pump more money into public education.

State lawmakers invested an additional $6.5 billion into public education during the 2019 legislative session, with Hidalgo County receiving an additional $90 million over the next biennium and Cameron County receiving just shy of this amount.

“For sure,” said Jennifer Esterline, executive director of the Texas Education Grantmakers Advocacy Consortium, when asked if the Valley business community frequently went to Austin to support meaningful school finance reform.

“And they did not do it just in Austin. They did it in their own communities. The fact that the business community was writing op-eds, speaking out in press conferences about the importance of meaningful reform was absolutely critical.”

In this podcast we hear from Esterline and Sagar Desai, managing director of The Commit! Partnership.

Editor’s Note: The main image accompanying the above podcast shows Sagar Desai, managing director of The Commit! Partnership, discussing legislative gains for public education at a meeting at the offices of Pharr Economic Development Corporation in November, 2019.