Political campaign strategy firm
May 31, 2024

🏫 Casting an Educated Ballot…in May?

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Political campaign strategy firm

Earlier this month, Texans across the state cast ballots in school bond elections. The CWJ team is very active in school bond elections – in fact, this year we worked with several communities from Hallettsville (near San Antonio) to just up the road in Longview, pass bonds to improve their schools. When we work on these elections, we often hear, “Why do we vote on these bonds? Don’t schools get money from the state?”

The short answer is yes, schools do get funding from the state. But those funds are for maintenance and operating costs, like electric bills and teacher salaries. When a school district calls a bond, they are asking voters to approve debt, much like a mortgage, to be able to build new buildings, purchase needed technology, or fund renovations or improvements to current buildings.

School bond elections are a way for the community to have a say in how their tax dollars are used for educational improvements. They help ensure that major financial decisions, which impact property taxes and the quality of education, are made democratically by the residents of the district.

Often, when a school district asks the community for a bond, a group of parents, community leaders, and residents will come together in support of the bond. When they do, they will reach out to the CWJ team to help direct them with the right strategies and tactics to get their message out to voters. It’s one of our favorite ways to help people make a difference in their community.

Longview ISD Bond Passes all 5 Propositions: Case Study

When the Longview ISD school board called a bond election for May 4, 2024, even the District’s most ardent supporters were doubtful about its chances of success. This was the third attempt to secure approval for critical facilities and repairs. The previous two attempts had been unsuccessful, including a rejection of two measures just six months prior.

However, a group of determined parents and community leaders, known as Vote Yes for LISD Kids, were not ready to give up. Despite their past efforts, they had not been able to secure a victory. When they partnered with the CWJ team, it was clear they were committed and ready to work tirelessly; they just needed a clear strategy and campaign plan.

With a campaign strategy in place, the Vote Yes team embarked on an intensive voter outreach effort. They knocked on over 5,000 doors, taking their message directly to the residents of the school district. They secured influential endorsements from the Longview Chamber of Commerce, Longview Mayor Andy Mack, and the Longview News-Journal.

The result of their relentless efforts was extraordinary. All five bond propositions passed, and they didn’t just pass by a narrow margin. The smallest margin of victory was 752 votes or 58% of the vote. This significant change in outcome demonstrates the power of a dedicated group of volunteers with a clear strategy. Their tenacity and hard work transformed the future of Longview ISD, proving that with the right campaign plan and time commitment, meaningful change is possible.