By State Senator Tan Parker
As May brings the blessing of Mother’s Day, I want to share how the strong voices of Texas moms serve as inspiration at the Capitol during this legislative session to create a better tomorrow and develop lasting solutions that uplift our great state. Working with the wisdom and devotion of Texas moms produces incredible results, no matter where they serve.
The first-hand knowledge of many women has influenced my legislative work during this session to strengthen Texas for our children’s brighter future. While I hear many stories covering various policy matters, these are just a few examples of how moms work daily to uplift children across the Lone Star State.
Over the past few months, I’ve enjoyed collaborating with mothers concerned about dyslexia services in schools, and who advocate for proper evaluations, diagnoses, and protections for students to succeed. Our bill, SB2140 (HB950) – the Beckley Wilson Act – achieves this goal, and I’m thrilled to see its progress in the legislative process. The inspiration these moms bring to Austin makes a significant difference, helping many children with dyslexia overcome challenges and reach their full potential.
I’m honored to work on several policy measures with another group of dedicated moms, tireless warriors for the most vulnerable, fighting for children with disabilities, shrinking the gaps in health and caregiving services for medically fragile children, and raising awareness for improving outcomes for differently-abled Texans and their families. Highlighting new opportunities for business ownership for Texans with disabilities, my bill, SB464 – the Blake Pyron Act – stems from a determined mom who helped her son with Down Syndrome become a successful small business owner. Headed to the governor’s desk, this legislation designates every October 17 as Entrepreneurs with Disabilities Day in Texas.
I’ve also been working on a policy inspired by mothers concerned about increased technology usage in classrooms, which can reduce peer socialization and impact physical and emotional development. Many moms recognized this issue when students returned to the classroom during the Covid pandemic. Last session, we passed a bill requiring the Texas Education Agency and the Health and Human Services Commission to develop best practices for tech usage in the classroom for healthy child development. This session, we’re working on further improvements with SB2141, to protect Texas children by postponing certain technology application curriculum integrations until after the 5th grade, allowing our youngest students to develop essential socialization and problem-solving skills.
I’m honored to carry legislation that permits the construction of a monument celebrating motherhood on the grounds of the Texas Capitol. If passed, it allows the Texas Preservation Board to accept plans and raise private funding for a project that replicates the National Life Monument created in Washington, D.C.
Moms across the Lone Star State always rise to meet great challenges. A mother’s love is the common thread where positive differences are made – whether she’s biological, adoptive, step, in-law, or just a reassuring woman who accepts everyone as her own. One day is never enough to recognize their limitless contributions or to give them the appreciation they deserve – as my daughters and I know every day with my amazing wife, Beth, and through the wonderful love my mom gives to our family. May your day be blessed and full of great memories to celebrate loved ones this Mother’s Day!
Please keep in mind that your Texas Legislature will adjourn on May 29. There are thousands of bills that have been filed with only a fraction that will advance in time to become law. You can stay tuned to the legislative process by accessing www.capitol.texas.gov or by following me on social media using @TanParkerTX. I am incredibly grateful for all the emails, phone calls, and letters people from across Senate District 12 continue to share. Please stay in touch on any issue on your mind by calling 512.463.0112 or emailing [email protected].