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Arlington ISD Holds Town Hall Over Leadership Cuts

By Carol Cavazos, CBS 11 News
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School lockers at a high school in Houston, Texas. (credit: AP)

School lockers at a high school in Houston, Texas. (credit: AP)

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ARLINGTON (CBSDFW.COM) – We’ve heard a lot about teachers losing their jobs and volunteering to take pay cuts.  But what about their bosses?  That was one question posed at an Arlington ISD’s Town Hall Wednesday night.

Parents at Lamar High School came to face the music and Arlington ISD’s budget crisis.  “Never thought it would’ve came to this point. But this is where it is now,” said Greg Walker, who has two children attending schools in the district.

In the first round, the district will have to cut staff and programs to save $15 million.  They’ll need to cut a lot more to offset the district’s estimated $48 million budget shortfall.


Anna Stevens worries about her second grader.  “I’m worried by the time she gets to junior high school, they might’ve started cutting arts and athletics.”

Superintendent Jerry McCullough sums up the future in a word.  “Bleak.”

No one wants to cut teachers. But what about administrators?  Overall, Arlington ISD administrative salaries are half the state average.

But what about the salaries at the top?  “I haven’t taken a pay raise in several years and if we start lowering salaries, I’ll be first in line,” said McCullough, who makes $235,000 a year.

Dallas ISD Superintendent Michael Hinojosa makes more than $ 317,000 a year.

Fort Worth ISD Superintendent Melody Johnson makes more than $ 324,000 a year.

But schools say the state got them into this mess and after the Town Hall meeting, parents agree.

Anna Stevens said, “These are the representatives that were voted in and I really feel they’ve dropped the ball.

Parents always ask about lottery money. The Lottery kicks in a billion dollars to state eduation every year. But state education needs $20 billion every year.

Many parents who attended the Town Hall meeting at Lamar High School say they plan to travel to Austin Saturday to rally the Governor for more money.

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