In an emotional exchange of goodbyes, board members for Dallas County Schools held their last meeting Tuesday, ending more than a century of existence for an agency that bused kids to schools in North Texas.
On Wednesday, a new committee will take over for the troubled DCS, beginning the considerable task of, among other things, determining how to parcel out buses – more than 1,000 of them – that area school districts will need so kids can continue to get to class.
"We know what we did, and we can hold our head high and say we did the right thing all the way through," board member Kyle Renard said, moments before the meeting ended.
On Nov. 7, Dallas County voters opted to shut down DCS, which has been plagued by past business deals that went bad, leaving the agency $130 million in debt and triggering an ongoing investigation by the FBI.
Board members have claimed the agency's former management withheld information about the questionable business deals, and ultimately undermined the public's trust.
Some of them expressed their fears for bus drivers and other employees left behind, and whether their new bosses will cut pay or benefits.
"There will probably be employees who will lose their jobs," said outgoing board president Gloria Levario.
"They won't have a living wage with benefits anymore. And that is really unfortunate for our DCS family," Levario said, adding: "I think it's just really a sad day in DCS history."