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Robert M. Bohmfalk
Texas House District 44
Status

Challenger

Party

Democrat

Occupation

Retired United Methodist minister and mental health case manager

Address

1066 East College Street, Seguin, TX, 78155

Additional Information

Previously ran unsuccessfully for the Texas House in 2020 and 2014 and for the State Board of Education in 2010.

Candidate Survey Responses


RESPONSES TO THE 2022 ATPE CANDIDATE SURVEY:

1. If elected, what will be your top priorities for public education?

I seek full funding of public education. Increase teacher pay (Texas is in bottom 10 among 50 states in teacher pay). I support science, math, and History. All of History should be taught,---the good, bad, and ugly.

2. What are your recommendations for funding public education, including securing the necessary revenue to sustain the improvements made by House Bill 3 in 2019? Do you believe additional funding is needed?

I seek a freeze on property taxes. We should decriminalize marijuana and tax it which should go toward education. At the state border we should legalize some gambling so Texans don't have to leave Texas to gamble and help fund other state's education. Yes, I believe additional funding is needed.

3. How would you address the challenge of rising health care costs facing Texas educators and ensure that active and retired educators have access to affordable health care?

Expanding Medication would help millions of uninsured Texans. It would also help save many county hospitals.

4. Do you believe the Teacher Retirement System (TRS) should be maintained as a traditional defined benefit pension plan for all future, current, and retired educators, or do you support converting TRS to a defined contribution plan that is more like a 401(k) plan, in which future benefits are not guaranteed?

I think the TRS should be maintained, but I think teachers should have the option to begin a 401(k) plan or pay into Social Security. All three options should have similar results in the end Schools might benefit more with a 401(k) plan.

5. What do you feel is the proper role of standardized testing in the Texas public education system? For instance, should student test scores be used for teacher pay, school accountability ratings, evaluating teachers, measuring student progress, etc.?

I would let teachers be allowed to teach. Students need to be tested about ever 3-4 years. I do not think the testing should be used for teacher pay, school accountability ratings, evaluating teachers, or measuring student progress.

6. Would you vote to create any type of voucher, tax credit, scholarship, education savings account, or other program aimed at paying for students, including any subpopulation of students, to attend non-public K-12 schools, such as private or home schools?

No, I oppose school vouchers. Students from public schools can compete with private schools in debates, sports, and other contest.

7. State law allows educators and other public employees to voluntarily choose to join professional associations such as ATPE and have membership dues deducted from their paychecks at no cost to taxpayers. Do you support or oppose letting all public employees continue to exercise this right?

Yes, I support teachers joining professional association such as ATPE. I support unions of all kinds.

8. What role, if any, should charter schools have in the public education system, and do you feel the number of charter schools operating in Texas should be reduced or expanded?

Many charter schools do not have the obligations to education like public schools have. Public schools have to answer more to parents and the district in what they do. Many charter schools are not regulated or have any oversight. I think the number should be reduced, but I think the opposite will happen. Many charter schools are too conservative.

9. How much freedom should school districts have to make decisions during disease outbreaks, such as requiring face coverings and immunizations or transitioning to remote instruction?

School districts need to put the students first in all areas. They should be free to make any decision necessary for both students and teachers. Remote learning should only be temporary.

10. What do you believe is the proper role of virtual education within the public education system? Do you believe full-time virtual education should be expanded, and if so, under what circumstances?

I think virtual education should be temporary. In some cases in some courses it could be expanded.

11. What do you feel should be the state’s role (versus the role of school districts or individual educators) in decisions about public school curriculum and instructional materials?

Teachers should be free to teach. Parents can express their views, but the teacher has to obligation to teach everyone.

12. The COVID-19 pandemic and additional instructional support needed to remediate students’ learning losses have placed additional strain on public schools’ staffing needs. How would you work to ensure classrooms are appropriately staffed, teachers’ workloads are manageable, and planning time is not sacrificed amid these challenges?

School Districts may need to raise or increase teacher salaries to recruit and maintain good teachers. There should be more joint teacher fairs to hire qualified teachers. Classrooms should not be overcrowded. Some smaller grade may need a teacher's aide.
 

Additional Comments from Candidate on Survey


COMMENTS SUBMITTED IN RESPONSE TO THE 2022 ATPE CANDIDATE SURVEY:

I ran for the Texas Board of Education in 2010, District 5. Rebecca Bell-Metarau is the Board member now. Conservatives have the right to put their own kids at risk, but they do not have the right to put all Texas students at risk. Age appropriate sex education should be taught with conservatives being allowed to opt their kids from it
Girls do better in higher math classes if they were segregated to girls only. I believe is teaching math, science, and History