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2011-04-14 digital edition

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2011-04-14 / Front Page

Trustees Vote to Renew All Teacher Contracts

Lexington Independent School District’s Board of Trustees voted last week to renew all teacher contracts, despite state budget shortfalls and the potential of budget shortfalls locally. Following the School Board meeting held on Monday, April 4, Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Frances McArthur said, “ In anticipation of dramatic cuts from the state because of the state budget shortfall, we have continued to look for more and more ways to reduce costs in Lexington schools. We have already cut over $500,000 and are looking for at least another $150,000 in reductions. Last week was an important decision point because the decision had to be made whether or not to renew the contracts of first and second year probationary teachers, in order to achieve the reductions needed. We have spent many hours getting input from staff at all levels of the district, crunching numbers, and trying to anticipate what our legislature might do. After long discussions with district administrators and our Board of Trustees, I made the decision that I would recommend to our Trustees that we renew our probationary teachers’ contracts.”

“At our last board meeting, the Trustees voted to renew the contracts of all of our teachers. There was not a single teacher’s contract that was not renewed because of the looming budget cuts from the state. This was a major affirmation by our Trustees in support of our staff and our students.”

“While we feel good about trying to accomplish these reductions with attrition and increased revenue through transfers, we still have major budget reductions to make that will undoubtedly impact everyone in our schools.”

“We are preparing the 2011- 2012 budget with nine and one half fewer staff members. Therefore, we will be shifting current staff into different positions in order to meet the needs of our students. Changing teaching assignments can be difficult, but at least our staff will all have jobs and health insurance.”

“I appreciate the support of our wonderful staff and community as we move forward on the very difficult process of moving staff and continuing to reduce expenses.”

Dr. McArthur continued, “I want to congratulate our UIL One-Act Play cast and crew, as well as Mr. Boyer, for winning last week in San Antonio and advancing to Regionals. These students have done a fabulous job in competition. I am very proud of all of the cast and the crew and wish them luck this week in Regionals.”

“The district track meet was held in Lexington this week. Again, our coaches did an amazing job of administering the meet. Everywhere I walked Monday evening, I was greeted by coaches and fans from our competing teams. They had nothing but great things to say about our children and our staff. Congratulations to all of our athletes and our coaches for their hard work!”

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