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Interview with Alma Lara

Alma Lara

Alma Lara

Moving on to the HISD Trustee races, we start with Alma Lara, who is running for the open HISD Trustee seat in District I. Lara is retired after a 35-year career in HISD in which she was a teacher, principal at Ketelson Elementary School, and Parent Specialist in HISD’s North Central District and East Region. In addition to that, Lara has an extensive history of community involvement. Lara was a candidate in District I prior to Natasha Kamrani’s announcement that she was not running again. Please note that this interview was conducted just before the announcement that Terry Grier was going to be the next HISD Superintendent; subsequent interviews were done after that. Lara lives in the Melrose area.

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PREVIOUSLY:

Karen Derr, At Large #1
Brad Bradford, At Large #4
Stephen Costello, At Large #1
Lane Lewis, District A
Lonnie Allsbrooks, At Large #1
Noel Freeman, At Large #4
Brenda Stardig, District A
Oliver Pennington, District G
Amy Peck, District A
Herman Litt, At Large #1
Natasha Kamrani, HISD Trustee in District I, not running for re-election
Alex Wathen, District A
Robert Kane, District F
Council Member Melissa Noriega, At Large #3
Jeff Downing, District A
Mike Laster, District F
Council Member Jolanda Jones, At Large #5
Mills Worsham, District G
Rick Rodriguez, At Large #1
Council Member Sue Lovell, At Large #2
Carlos Obando, At Large #5
Richard Sedita, District G
Jack Christie, At Large #5
Dexter Handy, District G
George Foulard, District G

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10 Comments

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  9. Bathus says:

    A few days ago, I sent Ms. Lara the following email, to which she did not reply. Her failure to reply suggsts to me that, indeed, she does not disagree with the teachers’ union on even one important issue. Is that a good thing? Not to me.

    —– Original Message —–

    From: Bathus

    To: info@almalara.com

    Sent: Wednesday, December 09, 2009 1:38

    Subject: Alma Lara and the Unions

    Dear Ms. Lara,

    When you came by my house the other day, I was really too busy to talk much and didn’t want to keep you long standing there in the rain, but there is a question I wish I had asked you.

    The campaign literature you gave me that day notes that your runoff opponent, Anna Eastman, has received contributions from groups and individuals that you say “are big supporters of vouchers and charter schools.” Because of that support, your literature raises the question, “Where will Eastman’s priorities be?”

    Of course, someone could ask the same question about you “Where will Lara’s priorities be?” since you have received so much of your monetary support from unions, not just the teacher’s union, but also from plumber unions, the SEIU, etc. See the December 8, 2009 Houston Chronicle School Zone Blog which reports your contributions from Houston Educational Support Personnel ($5,000); Plumbers Local Union No. 68 PAC ($5,000); Houston Federation of Teachers ($3,800); HOPE SEIU Committee on Public Education ($1,500).

    Having met you and followed your campaign pretty closely, I think you are a very good person personally and that you care about educating children, but I really do seriously question whether you have the independence of mind to stand up to the unions on any important issues.

    So my simple question to you is:

    CAN YOU TELL ME ONE OR TWO IMPORTANT ISSUES AFFECTING EDUCATION ABOUT WHICH YOU DISAGREE WITH THE HOUSTON FEDERATION OF TEACHERS, OR DO YOU AGREE WITH THAT UNION ABOUT ALL IMPORTANT ISSUES?

    This is not a complicated question, so I hope you will find time to answer before noon Thursday (12/10/2009), because at that time, your answer (or your lack of an answer) will be published in several relevant places on the internet. If you do not answer, I will conclude that you agree with the Houston Federation of Teachers on all issues.

    Thanks!

    Bathus

    Houston Heights