Archive for the ‘Education’ Category

More about KTXT-FM

My friend Jason started a most excellent Facebook group SAVE KTXT 88.1 FM which in 24 hours of existence already has approximately 2,000 members.

(design by the unstoppably great Dirk Fowler)

The facebook group is your one-stop shop for all the ideas and contact information you need to take action.

Of special urgency: please contact the Texas Tech Board of Regents, who continue their end-of-semester meeting tomorrow (Friday, December 12) at the Student Union Building. They need to hear the obvious public outcry over the shutdown and transfer of KTXT-FM. I think it’s even worth showing up to the public portion of their meeting to voice your protest.

Other than that: call in to Lubbock talk radio shows, write letters to the editor, write emails to elected officials in the region, and write letters to the relevant faculty at Texas Tech.

What is happening to KTXT-FM?

Terrible news today from Texas Tech Student Media:

Texas Tech University’s Student Media department is undergoing several changes. The most significant of those changes occurred today when KTXT-FM, the university’s student-run radio station, ceased its broadcasts on 88.1 FM and

Control of the radio station’s FCC license, which is maintained by the university, is being shifted from the Student Media department to Texas Tech’s other educational radio station, KOHM-FM.

No firm plans regarding the future of the 88.1 FM frequency or the related Web site have been announced.

“We agonized over this decision and looked for ways to enhance KTXT-FM’s role within the Texas Tech community, but ultimately we had to face the fact that changes needed to be made,” said Susan Peterson, director for Student Media. “We recognize this is a huge loss to those who are loyal to KTXT-FM - its listeners and its staff - but the department must grow and change in order to best serve the entire student body.”

Changes in Student Media were planned following an extensive study of departmental operations. Student input, fiscal reviews and administrative and in-house assessments factored into the decision that Student Media’s continued support of KTXT-FM was no longer feasible.

I don’t know if the budget at Student Media is going to be cut severely (I would not be surprised at this given who our Chancellor is), or if a turf war is being fought within the University over who controls KTXT (also would not surprise me), or if some other, unknown factor is at work here.

Lubbock is at risk of losing one of it’s most valuable community resources if KTXT goes away. This radio station can be heard all over Lubbock County and well into the surrounding counties. It’s how I know I’m getting close to home when I come back from a road trip. It’s how I know what day of the week it is sometimes (based on their evening specialty shows). It’s how I find new music (especially local music) and learn about shows here in town. It was going to be an integral part of my business advertising for Awesome Books in 2009.

This situation stinks. Something is going on that is bigger than a broadcast frequency being reassigned to another department of the University. Someone or some group is making a cultural play.

And don’t buy the line about KTXT losing money for Student Media. College radio stations are not for making money. They are for students to learn how to be on the radio, and they are news and culture resources for the community.

Let’s get to the bottom of this and do something about it.

KTXT-FM on Wikipedia

Obama Video Address 11/22/2008

It’s all about job creation between Jan 20, 2009 and Jan 2011: 2.5 million new jobs in 2 years focusing on infrastructure, green energy, and public education. I love it!

ACLU Conference: Great Opportunity for Texas Students

Today the ACLU of Texas announced that 25 paid trips to the National ACLU Conference are available!

The ACLU nationwide Membership Conference is an opportunity for students
to meet up with others who believe in liberty and justice, to hear
well-known speakers and to attend workshops that provide skills and the
inspiration to stand up for freedom. The ACLU of Texas is proud to pay
for the registration fees and 2 nights’ stay in Washington, DC, for 25
Texas students who wish to attend! The conference begins on Sunday,
June 8 at 2 PM and concludes on Tuesday, June 10 at 2 PM.

Learn more:

Democratic Presidential Candidate Straw Poll

A straw poll of 2008 Democratic Presidential candidates on the Texas Tech campus is underway. Volunteers from the Texas Tech Law Democrats and the Lubbock County Democratic Party will be at the West end of the Student Union Building (near the bookman statue) from 11AM-2PM Mon-Thurs to conduct the straw poll.

Results will be posted at

It will be interesting to find out which candidate resonates the most with students here in Lubbock!

TDW Hosts Vernita Woods-Holmes

Texas Democratic Women of the South Plains will have their regular meeting tomorrow (Friday) at 11:30am at Furr’s on Slide Rd. Their featured speaker will be LISD School Board member Vernita Woods-Holmes. She will discuss the decision-making process for the all-girl charter school as well as other issues of importance to the school district.

Their meetings are always engaging, and TDW of the South Plains is one of the fastest-growing TDW chapters in the state!

My friend Tommy Sellers has finished a redesign of his website TommySellers.Com. He’s one of the first real masters of IT in the area, having run Lubbock’s first Internet Service Provider as well as an Apple store.

I’m plugging Tommy’s website here because he has lots of useful LOCAL content and links. He also covers a lot of ground in areas of interest to this blog: education, health care, consumer issues, and senior issues to name a few.

Thanks, Tommy, for this great resource!

Attacking Public Education 101

For all future haters of public education, I have written down the 5 easy steps for assaulting our schools:

1) Underfund schools and underpay teachers for at least a decade in the name of “cutting taxes” and “smaller government”
2) Create bullshit standards for everyone to meet, and watch the poorer schools fail to meet them
3) Complain that schools are failing to meet standards while at the same time criticizing them for not teaching important civic and life skills because they spend all their class time “teaching to the test”
4) Offer the “solution” of letting a “free market” of competing private schools educate our children
5) Profit!

The rest of us — who believe that public education is America’s greatest strength — are up against “Attacking Public Education 203,” the advanced class. For their class project, state legislators like Lubbock’s own Carl Isett are actively writing legislation to destroy public education. Financiers like Leninger bankroll pro-voucher candidates to speed their project along, and privatization cheerleaders like Robert Pratt rant about their project on the radio. They’re working hard to get an A at being the bad guys.

That means we need to roll up our sleeves and work to elect people that are serious about preserving and improving our system of public education, as opposed to those who want to throw out the whole thing and start over.

If you’re not happy with our current system of public schooling, get in there and fix it… before it hits the auction block!

Garnet Coleman in Lubbock

I saw Garnet Coleman, one of Texas’ finest Democratic leaders, speak at the monthly Texas Democratic Women meeting today. He was wonderful, and his appearance brought the biggest turnout I have ever seen at a local TDW meeting (I have been to a few).

He talked quite a bit about the Speaker’s race, education, CHIP, and other priorities for 2008-2009. If events unfold as they are trending, we’ll see a new speaker (odds are good that there will be 76 people pissed off at Craddick), a Democratic majority in the State House, restored funding to CHIP, re-regulated college tuition, and a public school funding system that makes sense and actually funds our schools.

In what I couldn’t help but think was a remarkable coincidence, Coleman referred several times to Grover Norquist’s rhetoric about shrinking the government, which was the same rhetoric on my mind earlier this week for the Katrina anniversary. What is sad is that the Norquist school of neoconservatism — which is nothing short of an attempt to totally dismantle our government — has been the policy of the Republican overlords at the federal and state level since 2001. His point was very dire: the neocons are succeeding in their attempt to cripple government. Look at CHIP: 230,000 kids cut + 100,000 kids restored = still 130,000 kids not covered while Texas’ population continues to boom. Worse, Bush is now playing the same games with CHIP at the federal level. Sometimes I feel like Texas is the playpen for the most vile Republican policies out there.

But, there’s hope. With seasoned, effective leaders like Garnet Coleman (along with Jim Dunnam and Pete Gallego) and high-performing newcomers like Crosbyton’s own Joe Heflin, I think our odds of making things better for Texans in 2008 and beyond are looking pretty good.

Edit: The A-J covered the event.

LDP School Supplies Drive

The Lubbock County Democratic Party is having its annual school supplies drive. All money collected for the drive goes toward buying school supplies at bargain prices and distributing them to families in need on Saturday, August 18. Last year, over 1,000 students were given a full set of required school supplies.

You can donate securely online (via actblue) at:

Even a few bucks will buy dozens of folders, pencils, or spiral notebooks. If you’re looking for a very direct, efficient way to help area children in need, this is it.

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