NPT Capitol: Moody, Chavez team up
News release from the office of state Rep. Norma Chavez, in which she praises her freshman colleague, state Rep. Joe Moody, as a “team player”:
CHÁVEZ AND MOODY WORK TOGETHER TO PASS FUNDING FOR CHILDREN OF SOLDIERS WHO ARE ACTIVE DUTY OR IN A COMBAT ZONE
Amendment would provide EPISD and other school districts additional funds to assist BRAC students
AUSTIN – Today, State Reps. Norma Chávez and Joe Moody passed an important amendment onto House Bill 3646 by State Rep. Scott Hochberg. This amendment provides an additional allotment for the children of soldiers who are active duty in a combat zone or are transferring to a school district during the school year as a result of BRAC. This amendment will address the need for additional counselors, accelerated learning programs and other specialized programs needed for these relocating students.
“This important legislation is needed for the El Paso school districts who will receive 11,000 students into the public education system,” said Rep. Chávez. “Moody is a team player. Together Rep. Moody and I worked to amend this important bill, a legislative priority for the El Paso Delegation.”
“The growth of Ft. Bliss is an amazing blessing and opportunity for El Paso, but with that comes responsibility,” Rep. Moody said. “Part of our responsibility is making the transition for our soldiers and their families as smooth as possible. This additional allotment would be a huge step in the right direction. I thank Rep. Chávez for the opportunity to work with her on this amendment.”
Texas had over 41,500 soldiers deployed overseas in combat as of Feb. 28 of this year. These soldiers are estimated to have just over 20,000 students in Texas public schools. Tens of thousands of military students from other states and overseas will relocate to Texas over the next several years due to BRAC and the re-basing of our active duty service members.
El Paso alone is expected to receive an additional 11,000 students, with more than 1,700 arriving in the coming school year and nearly 5,000 more in the second year of this biennium.
These children face a special set of challenges such as adjusting to a new school and community and a different curriculum as well as the emotional strain and loss of parental assistance when one or both parents are stationed abroad in a war zone, particularly when death or injury occur.
House Bill 3646 will go to the Senate for consideration. Earlier this session, Rep. Chávez added the necessary $18 million appropriation amendment to the budget bill, Senate Bill 1, to fund this increase.