DeSoto ISD Cuts Nearly 100 Employees, Mostly Teachers

Mismanagement by previous administrators led to the massive budget shortfall, district says

DeSoto Independent School District leaders approved the elimination of about 100 employees during a late night meeting aimed at offsetting a $20 million financial shortfall.

The marathon meeting ended just before 1 a.m. Tuesday after the board approved eliminating 72 teachers, 16 administrators and 10 support staffers.

The district approved cutting surplus elementary teachers, with the exception of those in music, special education and gifted and talented programs.

"This is a monumental moment in this district history, and they made a decision that will put us on the road to recovery," Superintendent D'Andre Weaver said, as reported by The Dallas Morning News. "Our trustees supported that reduction, although hard, because our district has to survive. And we have to have enough funds to support the students and to move our work."

Trustees are also considering a 12-cent increase to the district's tax rate. After a homestead exemption is applied, the Morning News reported, a 12-cent increase for a home valued at $100,000 would be equal to an additional $90 a year in taxes. A public meeting on the proposed tax hike is set for June 24.

The vote was delayed during the last board meeting after the superintendent felt trustees needed more time to look at all of the options and each person involved.

In addition to those cuts, trustees have already voted to close Northside Elementary School at the end of the year to save money.

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