Support for Public Schools
Maria is a strong supporter of public education and community schools. She supports a moratorium on charter expansion as a first step towards making our public school system more democratic.
Maria opposes the inequitable way in which charters have public funding (actually about $1800 more per child) but less public accountability than real public schools. The laws and finance systems need to change and she supports that.
Maria's educational background is almost entirely in public schools. She started teaching in San Antonio ISD, continued teaching in HISD at Dowling Middle, and eventually became a math specialist in the Madison HS feeder pattern. She trained pre-service teachers to teach in public schools while a professor at UH and worked with dozens of HISD public schools to increase access to strong math and science teachers. She does currently work for a charter as an assistant principal to support her family but her policy priorities are directed towards a relentless support for real public schools.
If Maria was on the HISD board at the time of the vote, she would have voted against the Energized for Excellence charter contract that her opponent supported. The Houston Chronicle reported that Energized paid $17 million in fees and rent to the charter owner in 2019. Energized only has 4,000 students but the school head paid herself $500,000 annually. This is a bad use of taxpayer money.