In Through Dallas ISD's Out Door

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Above is KXAS-Channel 5's story from last night about teachers who camped out at 3700 Ross last night to sign up at 8 this morning for their up-to-$10,000 buyout; on the other side is WFAA-Channel 8's. In both I see my son's kindergarten, first-grade and art teachers; also, his would-be fifth-grade teacher. All are longtime Dallas ISD veterans who, just as the district had hoped, are opting to retire now rather than wait to be among the could-be-3,100 full-timers laid off in spring.

Concerned parents' e-mails began appearing in the in-box late last night, each missive conflicting with the next, echoing the discussion taking place in our house this morning. Some argue for the experience of great teachers decamping earlier than expected; others celebrate what they hope will be the energy of new blood. Some fear and mourn the unexpected departure of the beloved and the familiar; others welcome the challenges brought about by inevitable change. Either way, all I know is what my 7-year-old said this morning when he saw the parade of familiar faces lined up to take their goodbye bonuses: "I feel sad."

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