In talking to scores of Park Cities residents over the last couple months in connection with my campaign for the HPISD School Board, I realized that many people aren’t aware of the major issues currently facing the HPISD.  This includes both parents of HPISD kids and other residents.  Two of the key issues are the impending cuts in state education funding and the growth in our student population.

The cuts in state education funding will have a major impact on the HPISD in the immediate future.  Under the bill proposed in the Texas Senate, our district funding would be cut by an estimated $3.5 million in the first year, and $4 million in the second year.  This is considered the best case scenario.  Under the House bill, our funding could be cut by as much as $10 million!

This is not a temporary problem and won’t go away when the economy improves.  Because of a series of actions taken in Austin back in 2005 (which in effect instituted a statewide property tax), the system is broken.  For further detail on this issue and to see how the HPISD is reacting, I recommend that you read the series of articles by Dr. Dawson Orr, which are available on the HPISD website. (There are also links to these articles on my Facebook page).

As for the growth in student population, there are many things driving this growth.  In the past year, the district hired a demographer to study these trends, and formed a Demographic Advisory Committee (consisting of HPISD parents and other community leaders) to make recommendations to the School Board on how to deal with them.  The fact is that all of our district campuses are going to be at or near capacity in the next few years, and some action will need to be taken.  If you’re interested in this issue, I recommend that you read the report from the Demographic Study Committee, which is available on the HPISD website.

As a current member of the HPISD Finance Committee, and having served on the Demographic Advisory Committee, I am well-versed in the key issues facing the HPISD.  I look forward to having the opportunity to meet these issues head on as a member of the HPISD School Board.  Like always, with dedicated leaders and involved citizens, we will solve these problems.

Early voting in the School Board Election starts Monday, May 2, at the HPISD Administration Building on the corner of Lovers Lane and Westchester (next to Scotland Yard).  The polls are open from 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. the week of May 2, and from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. on May 9 and 10.   The election is on May 14 in the cafeteria at the Highland Park Middle School.  Polls are open from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. on election day.  Please get out and vote early!

BubbleLife Staff

Dear Friends,

You may know by now that I'm running for the Highland Park School Board, and that it is a contested election. I NEED YOUR VOTE! The election is on May 14, and early voting is May 2-6 and May 9-10.

This is a critical time for our school district and it needs proven leaders. When I was approached about running for school board, I agreed to do so because I felt I could provide some of that leadership. Over the past several years I have built a track record of service to our community and particularly to its kids.

In connection with the HPISD, I currently serve on the Finance Committee and have previously served on the 2010 Demographic Advisory Committee and a Strategic Planning Team focusing on district resources. I am chairman of the 2011 Park Cities Dad's Club Teachers Cup, a golf tournament which raises money for HPISD teachers, and have served on the tournament committee for the past five years.

In connection with my church, I am currently serving in my fifth year on the board of the Highland Park Presbyterian Day School, and previously served as co-moderator of the 5th-6th grade (JAM) and 7th-8th grade (JetStream) youth ministries.

As a member of the Salesmanship Club of Dallas, I am now in my third year as a Reading Buddy for a 4th grader at the J.E. Jonsson Community School. I also participate regularly in activities with the kids at the school.

My wife, Carol, has a stellar record of service to the community, highlighted by her term as PTA president of HP Middle School in 2008-09 and her service as co-chair of Mad for Plaid for the 2011-12 school year.

Carol and I have a vested interest in the HPISD, with all four of our children currently attending schools in the district. Sam Jr. is a sophomore at HPHS, where his sister, Loring, is a freshman. Katie is in the seventh grade at HPMS and William is in the third grade at Armstrong Elementary. All of our children are actively involved in their schools and we are proud of each one of them.

I am flattered by the outpouring of support I have received from the residents of the Park Cities in connection with my candidacy. More than 500 friends and community leaders have endorsed me, including several former school board members and former HP and UP mayors.

I need your support and your vote to win this election. Please make it a point to VOTE EARLY on May 2-6 or 9-10. Thanks!


Sam Dalton