Pressure Grows For Mike Miles To Resign

Pressure Grows For Mike Miles To Resign
Photo by Tim Mossholder / Unsplash

Houston ISD Superintendent Mike Miles was already feeling the heat from teachers, school workers, and community members over a myriad of issues at the state’s largest public school district. And that was before a deeply damaging report emerged that showed the top education official was allegedly funneling taxpayer dollars into charter schools in Colorado.

Spectrum News broke the news that Miles, who was appointed HISD Superintendent by the Texas Education Agency last year, dispersed millions into a private charter school company in Colorado that he founded. After he was named HISD Superintendent, Miles remained a consultant with the charter school network Third Future Schools, which he helped establish after he left as Dallas Superintendent in 2015.

According to Spectrum, three of those Colorado schools were experiencing declining enrollment and major financial issues. One was forced to close last summer with a five-million bond debt. Third Future also expanded into Texas in 2020. Spectrum then revealed two checks, totaling more than a million, that were directed from an Odessa school to a Third Future school in Aurora, Colorado. After requesting a comment from Miles, the HISD Superintendent directed Spectrum to the Executive Director of Third Future, who did not respond.

In the aftermath of such a damaging report, calls are growing for Miles to resign. The President of the Houston Federation of Teachers, Jackie Anderson, demanded a resignation. “Just days after learning that Mike Miles is laying off hundreds of custodians, librarians, and removing popular principals from our schools, we are now learning that he’s treating our public school system as his own personal piggy bank,” said Anderson in a statement to Chron.

Ruth Kravetz, a former HISD chemistry teacher and the co-founder of the Community for Voices of Public Education also added to the growing list of Miles’ harshest critics. “The results of this bombshell investigation should serve as a wakeup call for parents, students, and teachers who aren’t already outraged about Greg Abbott’s takeover of our school system,” she said in a statement. 

Miles tenure as HISD Superintendent has been turbulent over the past year. Miles issued a massive job cut for the upcoming school year. Less than a week ago, the Houston Federation of Teachers returned a vote of “no confidence” on Miles. They were also several protests outside elementary and middle schools over the removal of school official (including principals and custodians).

As of Tuesday afternoon, the Texas Education Agency Commissioner Mike Morath, who appointed Miles, has yet to comment.