Ruben Cortez was elected to the Texas State Board of Education in November 2012 marking the first time on over 30 years that a Rio Grande Valley native had served on the Board. He is seeking his third term in office to continue advocating for all Texas school children. He was appointed to serve as secretary of the State Board of Education by the full Board in November 2014.
Since 2012, Ruben has led efforts to make significant and substantial changes to include:
- Championing the topic and bringing attention to the need for minority courses specifically Mexican American Studies
- Led the efforts for the rejection of racists and inaccurate textbooks
- Requesting the creation of Mexican American Studies textbooks
- Improving educational outcomes
- Increased the amount of educators serving in advisory roles from District 2
- Advocated and urged for a stronger relationship between workforce, higher education and public education groups in order to build seamless pathways of opportunity from K-12 education into college and career arenas
- Coordinated efforts to align public K-12 educational programming to the needs of the workforce
Ruben's policy-making has been guided by his desire to build an educational system where students of all backgrounds and communities are given the tools and support needed to succeed.
Ruben represents citizens from the Rio Grande Valley up to the Lower Gulf Coast. This includes the counties of: Aransas, Calhoun, Cameron, Colorado, DeWitt, Goliad, Jackson, Kenedy, Kleberg, Matagorda, Nueces, Refugio, San Patricio, Victoria, Wharton, Willacy and parts of Hidalgo