Bennett is a fifth generation Texan whose family helped found the City of Coppell in the late 1800s. The family ran the general store in what is now the location of the historic “downtown” and were founding members of the first Baptist Church in the city where his Great Grandfather also served as the preacher for many years.
His strong ties to Coppell and the North Texas region served him well as the District 115 State Representative in the 83rd session. He served with distinction on the influential Appropriations and Public Education Committees where he authored legislation for the High Performing Schools Coalition. He also produced legislation to reduce high stakes testing in schools, reform testing for students with disabilities and improve school to work transition for special education students.
His service for nine years as a Trustee on the Coppell School Board and his outstanding service in the 83rd Legislative session were rewarded by nominations in both 2013 and 2014 for the Dallas Morning News Texan of the Year in Education. He was also named to the “Legislator Hall of Fame” by the Texas PTA, named Legislative “Champion” by the Texas Retired Teachers’ Association, and awarded an Honorary Life Membership in the Texas PTA for distinguished service to children.
Not only did he run for elective offices but he is also a retired endurance athlete having completed five marathons, a 39.3 mile marathon and a half, the Hotter-n-Hell 100 mile bike race and a 140.6 mile Ironman Triathlon.
He is a graduate of the University of Texas with a BS in Engineering.
He and his wife Beccy, a retired Coppell ISD teacher and active community leader in her own right, live in Coppell where they raised their three now adult children.
Bennett Ratliff joined dedicated volunteers to help raise funds for the vital mission of Texans for Life at the annual Walk for Life in Irving, Texas. He was honored to offer the opening prayer for those present and walk with them, even in the rain.
Bennett Ratliff was honored to be a featured speaker at the Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD B.E.S.T. Summit to bring the business community together with our public schools to provide mentoring and internships for over 300 outstanding high school students. The B.E.S.T. Summit, “Business & Education Succeeding Together”, was organized by the CFBISD and the Farmers Branch Chamber of Commerce to showcase their current internship program and the incredible results being achieved for area public schools students. As a local business leader and public education advocate, Mr. Ratliff was instrumental in the passage of recent legislation to strengthen the role of business in our schools and improve outcomes for students as they complete their education and enter college or the workforce. He’s proud to see the results already working for our local students and businesses.
At the invitation of the Young Republicans of Dallas County, Rep. Ratliff was honored to drive his antique truck for their float in the St. Patrick’s Day parade in Dallas. These young conservatives are the future of the Republican Party and it was a great day to spend getting to know them better and having some fun.
Bennett Ratliff and The Ratliff Group were honored to recognize Mr. Lee Griffith from Northlake College as the Student of the Month for February 2015 at the Coppell Chamber of Commerce meeting. As strong supporter of public education, Mr. Ratliff and his firm are proud to recognize successful students and the schools that they attend. ”The future of Texas depends on all students receiving a world class education and we believe in recognizing and encouraging the students that are setting the standard for success at their schools” said Mr. Ratliff. For more information about the Student of the Month program contact the Coppell Chamber of Commerce at www.coppellchamber.org.
Bennett Ratliff was featured on “Inside Texas Politics” on WFAA Channel 8 today with Jason Whitely to discuss the Texas Legislature under the leadership of Speaker Joe Straus. Watch the interview by clicking HERE.
Bennett Ratliff was pleased to participate in “I Love my Job Day” at Freeman Elementary in Valley Ranch and talk to students about his career in engineering. He showed them photos of engineering projects in North Texas, the United States and around the world to encourage them to study math and science to prepare for job opportunities in engineering when they graduate. ”I love talking to students and discussing what I do for a living, it’s very rewarding and I hope it will encourage them to continue their education and pursue a career as an engineer,” said Mr. Ratliff.
As we enter the New Year, I always find time over the holidays to reflect on the past year and look towards the horizon before us. In 2014 my family and I were blessed with good health, great friends and a growing Texas economy. We are thankful for all those who encouraged us, support the principles that have made Texas great, and continue to believe that Texas is the economic beacon of the United States. We have been humbled by your friendship, overwhelmed by your belief in our shared values, and comforted by your concerns for the future.
Looking forward to 2015, we pray for the continued good health of our families, the blessings of a vibrant and growing Texas economy for our businesses and communities, and the pragmatic conservative leadership that our state needs to preserve our future. We look forward to seeing each of you around town in whatever new roles we may take and continuing to work together to make Northwest Dallas County and Texas a great place to raise a family and own a business.
From our family to yours, we hope that you all had a very Merry Christmas and we wish you a blessed and prosperous New Year in 2015.
God Bless Texas,
State Representative Bennett Ratliff
We are so proud of the success of the Coppell High School Solar Car Team. From a start up only a few years ago as a part of the new Engineering program, they have grown into a strong well-established team with a proven track record. The Coppell ISD STEM program is a fantastic example of the innovation going on in our Texas Public Schools every day. Hon. Bennett Ratliff and The Ratliff Group are proud to sponsor you for the seventh consecutive year, keep up the hard work!
Representative Bennett Ratliff, fiscal conservative and small business owner, announced he is returning a budget surplus back to the taxpayers of the State of Texas. During his tenure in the House of Representatives serving District 115 he has consistently brought his monthly office holder expenses in under budget.
Ratliff said, “Being a good steward of taxpayer’s money is a high priority to me. As a small business owner we operate on a tight budget and have been conservative with our expenses for years, I applied the same principles to my state office. It’s easy to say you are a fiscal conservative, I believe that actions speak louder than words.”
Because of his fiscally conservative spending, Representative Ratliff will be able to return over $36,000 to the state budget and Texas taxpayers at the end of his term in January 2015.
Congratulations to Brookhaven College for receiving a grant from the Texas Workforce Commission Skills Development Fund. It’s easy to talk about creating jobs and growing the economy, but rarely do we get to see it in action. As a member of the Appropriations Committee that approved the funding for this program it’s gratifying to see our work in the Legislature producing results in our community. Thanks to International Flavors and Fragrances for being part of this program and creating new and improved jobs for NW Dallas County.
As published by the Texas Tribune in Trib Talk
What if I told you there’s a growing group of candidates, legislators, lobbyists and political activists who are proposing a new entitlement program that could cost Texans up to $5 billion per year over the next 10 years?
Under the proposed program, each eligible recipient would receive thousands of dollars annually, and by federal law we couldn’t even ask if they’re legal citizens. Once in the program, they could receive the benefits for 13 or more years.
You might say that this couldn’t be possible because conservative Republicans run our state, right?
Wrong. Because, as they say, money talks.
Well-funded special interests are vigorously pushing to take away funding from your public schools to pay for their religious schools, chains of for-profit private and virtual schools, and elite private academies.
Political action committees are giving millions of dollars to selected Texas candidates in exchange for pledges of support for education privatization schemes. They seek to funnel your tax dollars to for-profit and religious schools that have been around for years and chains of new schools that will spring up in communities considered good “markets.” The proposals would prohibit asking how these private interests are going to spend the billions of tax dollars, would not require any reporting of academic test results, and would not provide any accountability or transparency to taxpayers.
Lobbyists and special interest groups seeking the privatization of our public schools are already writing op-ed pieces and blogging misleading statistics about public schools in Texas. They use data that is 10 years old, reports from the Chicago and Washington, D.C., school systems, and carefully scrubbed statistics to mislead the public. They want to scare you into believing that our neighborhood schools are teaching controversial and un-American curriculum designed to brainwash our children, yet their proposals would allow the teaching of Common Core and other unapproved curriculum without state oversight.
But Texans know better, parents know better, students know better, and the business community knows better.
Texas’ high school graduation rates are at an all-time high and rank near the top nationally (second only to Iowa), we’re setting the pace on standardized test scores, and the choices and opportunities that we’re providing to our students are so broad that school districts are holding parent-training sessions to help them choose what’s best for their child.
Even Chuck DeVore, vice president of policy at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, which has embraced “school choice” policies, wrote in his 2013 book, The Texas Model: Prosperity in the Lone Star State and Lessons for America, that based on recent standardized test scores, Texas is “first in six of nine categories and second in another. … This stands in stark contrast to the myriad critics who keep repeating, falsely, that Texas’ educational system is horrific and failing.”
Texas parents can choose from over 8,000 public schools, more than 550 charter schools, magnet schools, open-enrollment campuses, dual-credit programs, early-college high schools and many others. In addition, roughly 400,000 students were eligible for a Public Education Grant last year to transfer out of their low-performing schools — all at no cost to the parents, and all accountable and transparent to taxpayers.
And all this despite a reduction in funding for our public schools of about $1.75 billion over the last five years and an enrollment increase of over 400,000 students.
So with election season upon us, the voters of Texas must ask their elected officials and candidates whether they support the creation of a new $5 billion private school entitlement — or whether they’ll stand with taxpayers and demand accountability and transparency for our public school dollars. As for me, I stand with the students, parents and taxpayers of Texas in support of our public and charter schools.
The Carrollton Farmers Branch ISD Council of PTA’s has honored Rep. Ratliff with one of the highest honors that can be bestowed by the Texas PTA, an Honorary Life Membership, for his outstanding service to children and youth. The PTA recognized Rep. Ratliff for his service as a school volunteer, business mentor, school board trustee and state representative with a 20 year record of commitment to public schools. “I am truly humbled to be presented this honor and thank the hard working members of the PTA for their service to our children and the future of Texas” said Rep. Ratliff, “and I look forward to working with you for many years to come to continue to make our public schools great.”
This spring, Representative Ratliff has been honored to have the opportunity to speak to students about Texas government, current political issues and the importance of voting. Dr. Parker Hevron, Political Science Professor at TWU, invited Rep. Ratliff to talk about elections and current political issues in Texas with his undergraduate political science students, and Marisa Garza, a senior at New Tech High School in Coppell ISD, invited Rep. Ratliff to speak to graduating seniors about the importance of voting as part of her graduation capstone project. ”I’m always honored to speak to students about the Texas Legislative process and their duty to express their opinion on election day” said Rep. Ratliff. If your class would like to have Rep. Ratliff speak to you about the Texas Legislature, please contact us.