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Federal Stimulus Money Spares FWISD Jobs

By Scott Gordon
|  Tuesday, May 10, 2011  |  Updated 10:05 PM CDT
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FWISD Jobs Spared

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Hundreds of jobs in the Fort Worth Independent School District will be spared because of federal stimulus money.

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About 150 jobs slated to be cut in the Fort Worth Independent School District instead will be spared -- at least for one year -- thanks to federal stimulus money, Superintendent Melody Johnson announced Tuesday.

The district had planned to eliminate pre-kindergarten teacher assistants, campus monitors, math coaches and other positions.
“From the beginning, I have said protecting teaching and learning in the classroom was our top priority,” Johnson said.

The jobs are now considered safe because of $13.6 million in extra funds the district learned it will receive, Johnson said. The money is Fort Worth’s portion of $830 million in federal stimulus money.

“This is a one-time infusion of money,” Johnson said. “While we are pleased that we can maintain our staffing in many areas, it is important to understand this is a one-year fix.”

The district still plans to eliminate about 75 jobs, primarily in the maintenance department.

Trustees voted last month to cut 553 positions, but many of them were already vacant.

Trustee Carlos Vasquez criticized the district for eliminating the positions last month. He had argued the district should save the jobs by dipping into reserve funds.

"I think we did all this needlessly," he said. "I'm happy we can re-hire them, but I'm unhappy we made them worry."

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