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Fort Worth LE - Some teachers are considered extra

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
June 4th, 2012
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

For most Fort Worth schools, the school year ended this last Friday, however 215 teachers don't know where they will be next year.

FORT WORTH, TX (Catholic Online) - The said number of teachers are declared surplus as the district gets stricter on the number of staff in order to make up for an estimated $41 million shortfall for next year. The teachers are being considered "overstaffed" and will have to find jobs somewhere else in the district. Teachers were still being notified as late as this last Friday, the end of the school year.

"By lunch, students were coming up to me and had this look of anguish asking me why I chose to leave them," said one high school teacher who did not want to be identified because he is looking for another job within the district. "That's the hardest part for me -- having students not understand the whole procedure and that I wanted to stay at my school."

District officials have said no teachers will be laid off. On Friday, 180 secondary and elementary teachers were in the surplus pool.

"We're hearing from a lot of teachers who are upset," said Steven Poole, deputy executive director of the United Educators Association, the school employee group. "They form attachments to their individual schools. But we're trying to assure them that they do have a job. We just don't know where yet."

Superintendent Walter Dansby's statement read: "We have implemented staffing ratios on every campus and identified teachers who will be reassigned to schools where they are most needed and can be effective in raising the academic success of our children. ... We hope to eventually place all of these teachers in permanent positions through attrition and identifying job openings that match their expertise."

Poole stated that some of the teachers are worried that there won't be enough vacancies for everyone, however, he said he hopes everyone will be placed. Staff will be selected for surplus based on the academic and program necessities of the school, specialized skills, and/or continuous experience with the district. The district offered $10,000 bonuses to teachers who gave early notice of resigning or retiring, in order to minimize layoffs.

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