Texas professors, students rally against proposed end to university tenures

University professors and students rallied in front of the Texas Capitol on May 3, telling the legislature to butt out of the classrooms.

This is coming after Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick proposed to end university tenures last year. He said academia has been "poisoned by woke policies" and "faculty seeks to indoctrinate students."

"How many of you are here today because the attack on tenure is the attack on the ability professors to do the work that we do," said one of the speakers.

"Every public student has the right to learn full and accurate account of history," said Monica Martinez, Uvalde native, 2021 MacArthur ‘Genius Grant’ Winner and one of the speakers at the rally.

Last week the Texas Senate voted to approve Senate Bill 18.

It would prohibit universities like UT Austin from granting an employee tenure or any kind of permanent employment status.

"As a native Texan who is a product of public K-12 education, I know the harm that it causes not to have the language to talk about the injustices you see all around you," said UT professor Ashante Reese.

Senate Bill 17 bans diversity equity and inclusion offices.

Last month, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick shared a statement on the Senate's passage of SB 17 saying in part:

"Texans have some of the best higher educational opportunities available nationwide, right here at home. However, DEI hiring practices have caused division and must be stopped."


A UT student shared how this will affect her.

"With legislatures attacking DEI, that's, like, threatening my ability, not only my ability but also my peers, to feel safe and empowered and welcomed on their campuses," said UT student Samaeeha Rizbi.