DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – DeSoto ISD, under fire for questionable spending uncovered by the CBS 11 I-Team, is combating criticism by releasing its own docuseries.
Wednesday night, the school district looked to address some of the concerns in a documentary airing in Victory Park in downtown Dallas.
The film is called, “DeSoto Rising.”
Wednesday night’s showing was for DeSoto community leaders, including the mayor and board trustees.
A public viewing will take place Friday at DeSoto High School, followed by a town hall meeting.
The purpose, district leaders say is to answer the question, “How did the district get here?”
Starting in the 1930s, “DeSoto Rising” traces how socioeconomic diversity became a part of the district’s identity. The film also aims to address the district’s recent controversies.
Superintendent Dr. D’Andre Weaver: “We decided to own our narrative a whole lot better than what anyone else could. we decide to tell our own story,” said Superintendent Dr. D’Andre Weaver.
A DeSoto ISD spokesperson explained the six-month documentary project cost $50,000 funded through a federal grant meant to increase diversity.
In January, the CBS 11 I-Team found questionable spending by current and former administrators including credit card charges spanning everything from luxury hotels to personal items.
Less than a week after the report, DeSoto ISD leaders announced the district may need to close a school to address a budget shortfall, proposing roughly $23 million in cuts.