By Jason Allen & Giles Hudson, CBSDFW.COMBy Jason Allen

FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – More than 200 jobs will be eliminated by the Fort Worth Independent School District under a plan aimed at trimming an anticipated $41 million budget shortfall, district officials announced Tuesday.

No teachers will be affected by the 213 layoffs, but 56 teachers assistants, 21 library clerks and seven physical education assistants will be let go.

“We understand there is a lot of anxiety about the state funding crisis and its impact on our district,” Superintendent Walter Dansby said in a prepared news release. “This continues to be a grave concern. However, through careful budgeting and realignment of resources, we believe we have a plan that will best serve our instructional needs of Fort Worth ISD students.”

School officials said as many as 84 employees will be laid off in the next few weeks. The rest — 219 positions — are currently vacant and will be eliminated.

The announcement late Tuesday continues a trend of staff reductions over the past two years for the cash-strapped district, which has cut 133 central office positions and more than 251 campus positions in the past two years — many of those by eliminating vacant positions.

“Over the past week, a group of district administrators representing every division and department has been working together — in the same room over long hours — to review each school’s master schedule to ensure efficiencies and meet student needs,” Dansby said. “As a result of this effort we believe we are going to maximize how we utilize existing faculty and hire from the outside.”

The job cuts will face a final vote of approval by the school board in June.

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