Image result for We recommend Patricia 'Pat' Hardy for State Board of Education, District 11

Former high school teacher Patricia “Pat” Hardy has been on the State Board of Education for 16 years, most of that time while an administrator in the Weatherford school district. We recommend that voters elect her to another term.

Hardy, 69, is one of 10 Republicans on the 15-member board, and her record is a conservative one. But she also has been unafraid to play a more moderate role, to prevent political considerations from interfering with what’s best for students in Texas public schools.

She’s in favor of school choice and charters, for instance, but wary of using vouchers to spend tax money on private school tuition. “More money needs to be going to our public schools rather than taking it and disseminating it to other places,” Hardy said earlier this year.

The state board is often attacked as being too moderate by conservative activists. When school districts began adopting a curriculum management program called CSCOPE, many on the right pounced. Hardy was named to a review panel and took time to read the huge volume of instructional materials and determined the criticism was unfounded.

That takes political courage, and for that reason and her long experience as a teacher and administrator, we recommend Hardy over Fort Worth neuropsychologist Carla Morton.

A Democrat, Morton offers a fresh vision for the board, one informed in part by her work with children with learning challenges. Morton, 45, also rightly chides Hardy for insisting that students be taught that slavery was one of many causes of the Civil War, rather than its primary cause. But on balance, we think Hardy has earned the vote of her constituents.

Libertarian Aaron Gutknecht is also on the ballot.