The Texas Legislature should "take a thorough look" at changing the structure of the embattled Texas State Board of Education, maybe changing it to a nonpartisan or appointed board, Texas House Speaker Joe Straus told the Star-Telegram Editorial Board Friday.
As education board members ended two days of acrimonious debate over science standards -- rewriting them on the fly to have classrooms teach "all sides" of evolution theory -- Straus said that if "the board is not getting their job done and they're not pleasing the Legislature or the citizens, then we ought to take a thorough look at what they are doing."
Straus said: "I think it's unfair that the State Board of Education makes so much news in the manner that they make it." Besides the board's handling of science standards, Straus said, "I have some other concerns about that elected body having so much management authority over significant dollars," referring to investments of the Permanent School Fund.
He said it would be "interesting" to look at nonpartisan board elections. Straus also brought up changing back to an appointed board.
"I've spoken to some people who were leaders in the effort to make it an elected board, and they're very sorry," he said.
(The photo shows an unidentified State Board of Education meeting attendee.)