Friday, October 17, 2008

Another Reason To Learn Math

If you don't, you may have to lay off beaucoup teachers.

The Dallas, Texas, school district laid off hundreds of teachers Thursday to avoid a projected $84 million deficit...

The deficit was caused by a massive miscalculation in the budget, CNN affiliate WFAA-TV reported.

That really sucks, and I hope the person(s) responsible for the "miscalculation" are gone, too. But I liked reading this part:

The Dallas Independent School District will hold a job fair Tuesday for all employees who were given notice. More than 110 employers will attend the fair, which was put together by the district, the United Way and the Dallas Regional Chamber.


Mrs. C said...

Oh, yay. Our district somehow couldn't account for about $2,500,000.00. It magically disappeared.


But they discovered the money missing through an accounting process... just about two weeks AFTER the bond issue passed. Now they're saying, whoops, guess we can't build that high school we promised during the big drive for your vote. Maybe we'll get 'round to it in a couple years. Nevermind that we told you it was a critical need. We have to tighten our belts. No more field trips and some of the staff are outta here.

I wish the people responsible for the "miscalculations" could be gone or in jail for embezzlement as well. It isn't fair to the teachers, their families and the children.

Or the taxpayer.

Anonymous said...

Exactly! Because of the GREED of one, or a few, individuals, our kids, underpaid teachers, and strapped taxpayers suffer most. It also attests to who these big media outlets cater to: the fat cats on top. Not once in the CNN article was the question asked, "What happened to the $85 million?" I mean, you do not just "misplace" that kind of money! they had the money for all of those employees last year, and the year before? So, who's the schmuck that "misplaced" it?

Ellen K said...

There is more to this than meets the eye. Dallas ISD has been a district in the middle of contentious courts, parents and administrators for decades. Many of their economic decisions are aimed more at placating one group over another. Dr. Hinojosa's hiring came after a great deal of dissention on the part of African American school board members. Much of the bureaucracy that has built up in the largely liberal, federally funded DISD has absolutely nothing to do with students or teachers. There are test administrator, supply clerks and layer and layers of people who buy stuff with the district's PO's and credit cards. I don't blame Hinojosa, the superintendent, directly for this economic outrage except for the fact that all of these hirings, acquisitions, programs and purchases would ultimately have to be presented to him and he would have to go over each item line by line and sign off on the budget. DISD is so large that you would have to have a team of CPA's to truly monitor the system. All it takes is one department choosing to not embrace full transparency, another department trying to create positive press in the community and you have a perfect storm. In truth, DISD is far too large for one person to manage. And that doesn't even touch on the programs that offer stipends to people who are specialized teachers and coaches. Sadly, most of the cuts are of long time teachers. The last thing DISD needs is rooms run by inexperienced teachers. Every educational study says that urban schools NEED experience in the classroom in order to achieve. Instead DISD is treading water. What a mess. And by the way, if a private corporation had this type of financial fiasco, wouldn't the FBI be on their doorsteps to perform an audit? I don't know why that hasn't been done. The best thing that could happen now is for the TEA to put a master in charge of the district, purge the board and all upper level administration and start from scratch. There is no excuse for this type of travesty.