August 11th, 2012
I first became interested in the concept of mayoral control in late 2011 when researching the campaign contributions to members of the Houston Independent School District (HISD) school board. Lax ethics laws have allowed HISD board members to...
Rich Ramirez is a 2012.5 senior studying Political Science at Brown University. Born and raised in the Texas Hill Country, Rich is a proud fifth generation Texan. Since attending Brown, his areas of research and study have centered on public education, city government, political speech writing, and constitutional law. His professional experience includes stints in government on both the federal and city levels, as well as with political campaigns. In March of 2012, Rich was awarded a Royce Fellowship through the Brown University Swearer Center for Public Service.
In the summer of 2012, Rich will be conducting a study in Houston, Texas, on the concept of mayoral control of Texas public school systems. Mayoral control of a public school system means that the city mayor plays an active role in influencing education outcomes. The state of Texas, which is home to three of the top ten largest cities in the United States, has virtually disregarded mayoral control reforms. Through both archival and interview based research, Rich will examine why Texas’ largest cities have not followed other major American cities in equipping their mayor with such power. He hopes to explain whether or not mayoral control of Texas' urban school systems is feasible and necessary.