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Message from Leadership

Photograph of Michael Lee, TARS Executive Director


Thank you for this opportunity to represent you and the Rural Students of Texas!


What an honor to represent the Texas Association of Rural Schools. I have always admired Bill Grusendorf for organizing such a strong organization and what he was able to accomplish for Rural Schools during his tenure. Any school district that receives the small school adjustment, and now the 300 square mile penalty phase out, has Bill Grusendorf to thank. He was instrumental in these and many other accomplishments. Mr. Grusendorf accomplished this for our Rural Districts, now we need TARS to defend these accomplishments and find more ways to benefit our students.




I have been around long enough to see the change that has been made since TARS was first organized and where we are today in promoting our Rural School Districts. The largest change of course is in the State Legislature. As the population continues to gravitate toward the urban populations, and the number of Rural Legislators continues to decrease, the obstacles grow more challenging.  We must keep our message out front and preach about the wonderful accomplishments our students in Rural Schools achieve. 


As one traverses the halls of the State Capitol, the need for good advocacy for our districts is readily apparent. I look forward to working on your behalf with Leigh Ann Glaze as part of TARS.  We also look forward to growing TARS to better meet your needs and represent your interests. 


Please know that we will work on behalf of all rural schools as we find ways to benefit our schools moving through the legislative sessions.



Michael Lee

Executive Director