Dallas city leaders refused on Wednesday to endorse financing for the expansion of charter schools, instead delaying a vote on funding until more study can be done.
The decision came after council members heard a very passionate debate that questioned assistance for charter schools in opening new campuses while the school district was closing 11 inner-city schools because of money issues.
Mayor Mike Rawlings said competition from charter schools can help make the Dallas Independent School District better.
"There's a new frontier out there, and I think we can be courageous enough to break through it," he said. "I want everybody's questions answered, but I'm not going to personally stand for poor people to get bad education anymore."
"You made it sound as if everybody doesn't support poor schools, and that is not true," Councilwoman Carolyn Davis said.
Five schools in Davis' district are slated to close, and she has voiced concerns in the past over funding charter schools while DISD in chaos.
The vote was delayed for two weeks, but Davis and others want it delayed even longer.
Uplift Education said it would seek other funding for expansion if city leaders don't approve its plan. The group said it would expand one way or another.
Its expansion plan includes opening a school in a building in the 2600 block of Elm Street in Deep Ellum's nightclub district.