Fort Worth ISD tackles budget cuts at board meeting

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by CHRIS HAWES

WFAA

Posted on February 22, 2011 at 11:15 PM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 23 at 12:08 PM

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FORT WORTH — Massive budget cuts in the classroom were discussed at Tuesday's school board meeting. The biggest change that a lot of families are likely to notice could be the disappearance of some of their favorite teachers.

The Fort Worth ISD plans to double the cash incentive — from $500 to $1,000 — for teachers who voluntarily quit or retire.

The offer is also being extended to support staff like secretaries and assistants.

The school board also approved a hiring freeze while talking about how to determine which teachers will lose their jobs with the spectre of state funding cuts.

Superintendent Melody Johnson said it would send a terrible message to cut new teachers without tenure, who are often among the youngest employees, just out of school.

Johnson acknowledged, however, that recent hires are often the cheapest employees to terminate because they cannot request an appeals hearing, which can cost the district as much as $50,000.

E-mail chawes@wfaa.com

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