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Monday, September 25, 2023




Houston, we have a problem. And his name is MeatAxe Mike Miles. The state-appointed superintendent of Houston ISD is on a mission to destroy the district and privatize the schools, and he's not even trying to hide it. In fact, he's hoping to do it much sooner than his estimated five-year plan. 

Miles has already made some diabolical moves, like cutting custodial staff because apparently dirty schools should just be closed (according to page 86 of the Billionaires Playbook for Privatizing Schools). But that's not all, folks. In a move that can only be described as pure evil, he cut the toilet paper budget in half. Yes, you read that right. HALF. 

Now, I don't know about you, but when I think of a school, I think of books, pencils, and toilet paper. It's a basic necessity, like air or water. But apparently, Miles thinks differently. Maybe he thinks the students can just use their sleeves or something. 

But in all seriousness, these cuts have real consequences. The Houston Education Association has expressed concerns over potential safety issues arising from the layoffs of custodians, who secure school buildings in the morning and lock up at the end of the day. And let's not forget about the poor students who now have to ration their toilet paper use. It's a sad state of affairs, folks. 

But Miles doesn't seem to care. He's too busy trying to build a culture of high performance standardized test takers and change outcomes for the Houston district. He expects about 70 schools to receive a D or F in the state's accountability system from an A-F scale, which takes into account state test scores. One of his main tasks at the district's helm will be to ensure that none of the schools receive a failing grade in multiple consecutive years. 

Now, I'm all for improving education outcomes. But tying compensation to classroom outcomes? That's just ridiculous. It's like saying that if a football team doesn't win every game, the coach doesn't get paid. It's not fair to the educators who are doing their best with limited resources and it's not fair to the students who may face even more pressure to perform well on standardized tests. 

But what do I know? I'm just a lowly writer trying to make sense of this crazy world we live in. All I know is that MeatAxe Mike Miles is not the hero we need or deserve. He's more like the villain in a bad 80s movie. And if he gets his way, Houston ISD will be a wasteland of dirty schools and empty toilet paper dispensers. 

So what can we do? Well, for starters, we can speak out against these cuts and hold Miles accountable for his actions. We can support our educators and demand that they be treated with respect and fairness. And most importantly, we can keep fighting for a better future for our children, one where they can learn and grow without fear of budget cuts or standardized tests. 

In conclusion, MeatAxe Mike Miles may think he's the king of Houston ISD, but he's really just a court jester with a bad haircut. Let's show him that we won't stand for his nonsense and that we're ready to fight for what's right. Because at the end of the day, education is too important to be left in the hands of someone like him.

Some service, sanitation positions eliminated at Houston ISD 

Houston ISD Superintendent Mike Miles sets a deadline to show results | The Texas Tribune 

Houston ISD Superintendent Mike Miles says he needs four to five years to turn the district around