UPDATED: February 26, 2019 6:00 AM – The board voted to transfer $8 million from the general fund to make the district’s debt payment from August 2018.
DeSOTO, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – The DeSoto ISD Board of Trustees was considering massive budget cuts in order to stay afloat, during a board meeting that ran late Monday night.
The board was still in executive session as of 10:20 p.m. Monday.
But the plans released by the district ahead of a regularly-scheduled board meeting Monday afternoon revealed DeSoto ISD’s financial problems run much deeper.
Interim CFO Deborah Cabrera intends to unveil a plan that will generate $23 million in cuts, according to a presentation posted online.
Decisions on the proposed budget cuts that include increasing class size, temporarily closing a school campus and reducing the staff and budget for central office aren’t expected until March.
Regarding class sizes, all schools could see increases by an average of at least 50 percent.
In DeSoto ISD middle schools the average student to teacher ratio could jump from 15 to 1 to 28 to 1.
In high school, classes could have as many as 33 students.
School Board Trustee DeAndrea Fleming said at Monday night’s meeting she fears the impact larger class sizes could have on learning.
“What I cannot sit here and say is ‘yes I understand how we got here,’ but I tell you since the time I took this seat, it should not impact our children,” she said.
Meanwhile, DeSoto ISD remains under multiple investigations by the Texas Education Agency and DeSoto Police for financial mismanagement.
Last fall, Dr. D’Andre Weaver took the top job after the former superintendent, David Harris, resigned.
Dr. Weaver said Monday night in most cases the class sizes would exceed the recommended ratio.