Northside ISD will add 777 new positions for the 2013-2014 school year after Trustees approved both a Growth and Improvement budget and a Restoration Funds budget that will restore some of the education funding cuts made by the state two years ago. Additionally, the restored funds will allow for a reduction in class sizes.
“In the last two years, we’ve gone through a hiring and salary freeze as well as cutting around 1,000 positions. This is good news for NISD staff, students, and the Northside community,” says School Board President Bobby Blount.
Three new schools will open in August and the addition of 2,500 expected new students will bring NISD’s total enrollment to more than 101,000. To meet these growth needs, Northside Trustees approved a Growth & Improvement budget of $22.1 million. This budget includes 338 new campus-based positions (teachers, counselors, librarians, nurses, instructional assistants and clerical staff).
Following this month's passage of the state budget, which restored $3.4 billion of the $5.4 billion in education cuts made by the state two years ago, Superintendent Dr. Brian T Woods recommended that the District’s "Restoration Funds” be used to partially restore some of the cuts forced on NISD which will help alleviate crowded classrooms. The Board agreed and approved a return to the 22 students per teacher (22 to 1) standard ratio for kindergarten through fourth grade classes, and the addition of two to ten new teachers at all secondary schools.
Specifically, the “Restoration Funds” will add 361 teachers, 13 high school counselors, 20 campus administrative interns, seven police officers, five school nurses, 20 custodians, eight maintenance employees, one technology administrator, one principal-coach, and three maintenance/security systems team members. This reflects $23.6 million out of the expected $33 million Restoration Budget. The balance will be held to ensure that the District is able to meet future needs.
“We are adding staff to all our schools because we want smaller class sizes and we need additional staff to help our students be successful. This plan is the best use of the state’s Restoration Funds and addresses class size at elementary and secondary schools, school safety, and support staff,” says Dr. Woods.
Adding the positions that are a result of the Growth & Improvement budget (338 positions) to the staff added as a result of the "Restoration" budget (439 positions), the result is 777 new personnel units for 2013-2014. In addition, the Human Resources Department is also replacing all employees who retired or resigned this year bringing the total new personnel expected to be hired in the next two months to well over 1,000.