Texas Lawmaker Makes Tearful Promise To Fight For School Choice

AUSTIN (March 21, 2013)—State Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston, the chair of the Senate Education Committee, broke into tears Thursday as he promised to fight for dramatically expanding school choice in Texas.

But Patrick also announced Thursday he was softening his high-profile bill to allow an unlimited number of charter schools to operate statewide.

Instead, he told his committee he is modifying his proposal to seek a more-gradual, tiered approach to charter school expansion.

The committee has the power to refer the modified bill to the full Senate, but instead left it pending.

Meanwhile, Patrick's tears came as a group of students told the committee of dropping out of school, but then returning thanks to charter schools specializing in at-risk youth.

His voice cracking, Patrick said, "I am going to fight for you."

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