Editor’s notice: This article has been up-to-date to include things like more remarks from Precinct 1 Commissioner Rodney Ellis.

Five of the 29 Harris County academic entities suitable for the county’s disparity study fund have submitted letters of intent, with two weeks remaining ahead of the prolonged Aug. 11 deadline.

The $2 million disparity analyze fund presents monetary backing for school districts and community schools to carry out scientific tests to determine no matter if all companies have equal obtain to district and local community college or university contracts.

Precinct 1 Commissioner Rodney Ellis said in a July 20 press party that Alief ISD, Houston ISD and Spring ISD system to take part in a $2 million disparity review fund out of 25 suitable school districts Houston Neighborhood Higher education Program and Lone Star University Process are the two fascinated functions out of four suitable community college or university programs.

Ellis pressured the worth of conducting disparity experiments throughout the county to quantify how much dollars is essentially remaining awarded to minority- and women-owned firms. He cited the outcomes from Harris Health and fitness System’s disparity study, which located it experienced awarded % of its contracts to Black-owned firms from 2018-2019.

“I’m confident that Harris Overall health, they had been shocked [by the results],” Ellis claimed. “They just assumed that the numbers had been much better than that simply because they’ve never gathered them.”

In November 2021, Ellis advocated for the generation of a fund for community schools and impartial college districts to launch their own disparity experiments.

Commissioners voted 3-2 on June 28 to approve $2 million for the fund, with Precinct 3 Commissioner Tom Ramsey and Precinct 4 Commissioner Jack Cagle opposed. Ramsey mentioned in an e mail he voted no mainly because he was unpleasant with how the study was currently being funded. The $2 million will come from the county’s $30 million FLEX fund, which is comprised of normal fund income created available after transferring qualified bills to the American Rescue Program Act fund, according to a June 7 Business of County Administration memo to Commissioners Courtroom.

Alongside one another, taking part faculty districts and neighborhood faculties will sort a consortium to work collaboratively with a single seller in simultaneous disparity scientific tests, according to the fund’s announcement from the Section of Financial Equity and Chance.