Update: Dallas Metropolitan school districts

Super Science Family Fun Night
Super Science Family Fun Night

Special to The Dallas Examiner

DALLAS ISD

Trustees have approved the recommendations of a salary study conducted by the Texas Association of School Boards calling for mid-year salary increases for certain job positions in Food and Child Nutrition Services, Police and Security, Maintenance and Facility Services, Construction Services and Transportation Services.

The action will result in pay scale changes and compensation increases for 61 percent of employees in those departments, effective March 1.

The TASB study compared the salaries and pay scales for positions in the Operation Services Division with average pay for similar positions in the Dallas labor market. Comparisons were based on jobs requiring similar skills, qualifications and responsibilities at other school districts and Dallas employers.

The study found that salary adjustments are needed to recruit and retain employees in grounds and food services. As a result, the study recommended the district provide an immediate pay raise to employees in certain job categories to be more competitive in the market.

Among the recommendations approved by trustees:

• Raise the minimum wage for all employees to $12 per hour.

• Add adjustments for experienced employees in the bottom half of the pay range (i.e., those below market pay).

• Reset pay ranges to match market pay scales.

• Adjust the pay for other groups of employees during the regular budget cycle.

• Create a new pay structure for Construction Services.

Based on the board’s action, 1,900, or 61 percent of employees, in Police and Security, Maintenance and Facility Services, Food Services, Construction Services and Transportation Services will receive immediate salary increases ranging from 9.6 percent to 15 percent.

The anticipated cost for the raises for the remainder of the fiscal year is approximately $1.6 million, which will be covered with funds from the district’s general operating budget and special revenue funds.

TASB is currently conducting a second study to review the salaries of all other district employees. It’s expected that the findings will be presented to the board in April.

Any recommendations for salary adjustments as a result of that study will be considered as part of the district’s 2019-2020 budget deliberations.

DESOTO ISD

DeSoto Independent School District’s first Super Science Family Fun Night will be held Thursday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at DeSoto High School Academy, located at 600 Eagle Drive in DeSoto.

Students will bring science to life using cutting-edge technology, including a computer programming robot, through presentations, inventions and projects surrounding STEM topics. Attendees will rotate to different science stations, learning about everything from augmented reality to robotics.

Headed by robotics educator Mike Causey, the DeSoto robotics club and AV club have strategized presentations packed with surprises, including challenging a coding robot to solve math functions. Students will watch DeSoto superintendent, Dr. Joshua Isaacson, take part in the computer programming activity.

DALLAS ISD

Dallas high school students can get free formal wear for prom courtesy of the Dallas Public Library’s Fairy Tale Closet at the Central Library March 9 from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Hundreds of gowns in various sizes and styles will be available, as well as shoes, accessories, and a few suits and jackets for those who eschew the traditional gown.

“Prom is an expensive rite of passage,” said Melissa Dease, communications and youth services administrator. “We started the Fairy Tale Closet to help every teen feel like a princess, regardless of their family’s economic need. This year we’ve added a gender-inclusive component for LGBTQ+ teens who might feel more comfortable in a safe and welcoming environment.”

The LGBTQ+ centric event will be held March 10 from 1p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

The prom closet began in 2014 and is restocked each year with donations from hundreds of individuals and organizations, including St. Luke “Community” United Methodist Church, bridesmaids’ shops, Neiman Marcus, Sam Moon, women’s groups and public libraries. The Friends of the Dallas Public Library provide additional supplies to make the event a success.

Saturday’s registration is full, but walk-ins are encouraged Saturday afternoon and Sunday. For information on this program, call 214-670-7934 or email teens@dallaslibrary2.org.

DALLAS ISD

Dallas ISD has invited parents and community members to review and comment on the district’s proposed student calendar for the 2020-2021 school year. Feedback or questions can be submitted at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/2021calsurvey. The short calendar survey is available through March 15.

Highlights of the survey:

• Teachers report for work Aug. 8.

• The first day of class for students is Aug. 17.

• The last day for students is May 27.

• Holidays include:

– Labor Day (Sept. 7)

– Thanksgiving break (Nov. 23 through (Nov. 27)

– Winter break (Dec. 21 through Jan. 5)

– Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day (Jan. 18)

– Presidents Day (Feb. 15)

– Spring break (March 15-19)

– Memorial Day (in May)

• Nonschool days for all students are Oct. 9 and Oct. 16

• State fair day for elementary students is Oct. 9.

• State fair day for secondary students is Oct. 16.

• Staff development day for secondary teachers Oct. 9.

• Staff development day for elementary teachers is Oct. 16.

• Two days in April are designated bad weather makeup days.(April 2 and 5)

• Students will attend school a total of 172 days.

• Teachers will work a total of 185 days, including 9 staff development days and 5 preparation days.

Pending changes to the draft, trustees are expected to consider the calendar for approval in April.

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