So I’m taking one beginning Monday, March 27.  Me and the old car, the one with 224,000 miles on it, are heading west to Austin, TX.  Had the oil changed two days ago, plus got two new front tires, and away we go.

There is a purpose in my madness.

The public school advocacy group, Friends of Texas Public Schools, is having a fund-raising banquet on Wednesday night.  This organization has been active for several years and their mission is simple–celebrate the success of public schools in the Lone Star State.

My friend Diane Ravitch is coming from New York to speak.  Without doubt she is one of the country’s leading voices for public education and someone who never backs down from pointing out that so many of the so-called “ed reforms” being promoted today are more about power, greed and money than educating our young folks.  If you don’t check her blog regularly, you should.  It’s the best place I know to learn what is happening all over the country.

Will also spend some time with Rev. Charlie Johnson who runs the group, Pastors for Texas Children.  This is a very intriguing approach to supporting public education.  They now have 2,000 churches in Texas in this effort, to not only advocate for common sense approaches to education, but in many cases provide help and assistance to schools in their community.

Charlie grew up in Monroe County, AL before heading west years ago.  So he has an affinity for this state and would love to see about planting the seeds for a similar group here.  We have discussed this at length.  I really and truly think that anyone who works with children is doing the Good Lord’s work and I can’t think of a more fertile mission field than the schools that educate 90 percent of all our young people.

Look at Charlie’s web site.  If you, or if you know of someone, might be interested in learning more, please let me know.

Decades ago it was not uncommon for someone to pass an empty sharecropper’s cabin in Alabama and ask, “Where did ole so and so go?”  Often, the response was simply, “Gone to Texas.”

Some who left were kin folks of mine.  But unlike them, I do plan to return in a few days.