Last month, parents in Waller ISD confronted the school board regarding pornographic books in the school library that depicted domestic and sexual violence. The Waller ISD school board and superintendent responded by removing the books and beginning a separate auditing process to approve books for the library to ensure age-appropriate materials for the future.
But several parents, including Josh Posey, the father who stood up and read from the explicit books his son brought home, still feel that the issues regarding their school system are not yet resolved.
Waller County Patriots, a local conservative grassroots organization, has been doing their due diligence to enact meaningful change in the county, beginning with attending the school board meetings of all school districts in the county.
“We hope that we can get people involved and create an awareness that … hey, look at the books, these are shocking, but look at what else is going on around us,” Posey told Texas Scorecard. “Our test scores are failing. Our education system here in the county is not doing so well. And we’re being taxed like we’re a ginormous district. Something is out of balance here.”
Posey became aware of the issues with some of the books being used by the English Language Arts teacher in August when his son came home disliking the reading material assigned. In the following months, Posey and his wife had their son bring the books home in order to inspect them.
They were shocked and angered by what they found.
“How dare this come to our little bitty town? Who has done this?” Posey and his wife questioned.
They recognized the similarities of their case to some of the other issues happening with schools around the country and began following the tracks of parents in Loudoun County, Virginia, listening for buzzwords and book titles that they could check against the Waller ISD libraries.
“We needed to prove it first before making an accusation. So, that’s where we started to look into things, and we found Matt Krause’s book list and began to use that as a separate tool well into our documentation,” Posey said, referring to a list of explicit material compiled by the state representative. “But we’ve been sitting on some information as we gathered more,” said Posey.
The public request for information Posey filed with Waller ISD came back with information regarding the purchase order and who signed off on two of the books Posey read from in the November meeting. The person who approved the purchase is a former CFO for the district who is no longer employed there.
They intend to file additional requests for other books found in the library to ensure this was truly a case of a lackadaisical auditing process.
In the meantime, while waiting for more information and clarity, Posey assuredly stated that they have no intention of making any accusations without adequate proof, and their goal is simply to provide more accountability and transparency in their county.
According to Posey, explicit materials in the schools is not a solitary issue.
“It also bleeds over into taxation issues, because my taxes are really high in Waller County. Are they this high because we have an unregulated school district spending money on things that shouldn’t be having money spent from the taxpayers on? So it opens up … into a lot of other issues, because if they can get away with … unchecked spending on books and nobody’s auditing stuff, what else can we find?”
Ultimately, Posey’s hope is “that as we as we start to realize that we can teach other people in our community what their role is for keeping a check on these these things—like the school district—we can inspire people to step up and take action and stop being homebodies and letting things run out of control. Because, eventually, we’re just gonna fall off a cliff.”
“We won’t be able to support ourselves, or we won’t be able to live in our community because the taxes will be so high and education is already terrible.”