While congressional dueling has forced the president to make dire cuts in the national budget, Dallas ISD announced a surplus during the monthly meeting of the Dallas Independent School District Board of Trustees on Thursday, Feb. 28. DISD projects expectations to end the 2012 school year with a budget surplus of over $30 million, according to a statement by Board Trustee Mike Morath for News 8, 10 PM Update following the Board’s meeting on Thursday.
How is that possible when, just over a year ago, this same District was in an uproar when this Board cut hundreds of teachers’ and other staff’s jobs due to a shortage? The only issues remotely rivaling the outrage of teacher pay and job cuts the 2011 school year were the closing of ten District schools and unwise spending by certain school administrators. So, how could this sudden, unexpected windfall be explained when recent national deficit cuts courtesy of “the dreadful sequester” herald potentially ominous future cuts to Texas education funds? Oddly enough, it seems those very extreme measures resulted in “under spending” in this year’s budget, creating savings in the budgets for 2012 and 2013 school years by $189 million and $230 million, respectively.
It appears plans to include that three percent teachers’ pay increase in the budget for 2013 school year as Superintendent Mike Miles promised, has merit.