4

DISD Super Testifying in Austin This Morning

^
Keep Dallas Observer Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Dallas and help keep the future of Dallas Observer free.

At this very moment, the state Senate Committee on Education -- which includes chair Florence Shapiro, John Carona and Royce West -- is hearing testimony related to these seven Senate bills, most of which would let school districts increase class size and give teachers furlough days and further flexibility in order to offset some of the budget gutting necessitated by the state's shortfall. You can watch the hearing here (scroll down and get thee RealPlayer); so far so fascinating. And the reason I mention it:  Among the parade of educators scheduled to speak to the committee is Dallas Independent School District Superintendent Michael Hinojosa, who is due up shortly.

Update at 10:50 a.m.: Hinojosa is testifying at this very moment, insisting, regarding class sizes, "We need some flexibility." Right now, says the super, "We're staffed at 19:1 average district-wide," and 21:1 would save $20 million, he says. (Hinojosa, however, doesn't want to grow student-to-teacher ratios at the unacceptable elementary schools.) If DISD can jump there, he says, that would allow for 30:1 in secondary schools -- which, he says, will presented in Version 2.0 Thursday morning.

He also pushes for salary reduction. One percent of payroll is $8.5 million; 10 percent is $85 million, and "that helps us manage." He says DISD trustees would likely ask for two, three percent reductions. And he'd like three, four days of furloughs, at least: "That's a bunch of teachers we don't have to lay off."

Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.

 

Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.