Tue March 8, 2011
Austin School Trustees Reject $10,000 Resignation Incentive
The Austin Independent School District's Board of Trustees last night opted not to adopt a plan to pay contract educators $10,000 for resigning voluntarily, reports Community Impact News.
According to Superintendent Meria Carstarphen, the board's recommendation stems from the possibility of AISD paying both incentive packages and unemployment insurance benefits, which would not save the district money.
"What I have learned, being a new superintendent in Texas, is that everything shiny in Texas is not gold and therefore, you better know the law and the statutes of what is underneath," she said. "The details of this require great scrutiny in Texas."
Labor leaders were predictably disappointed, according to the Statesman.
"I've learned that a more objective policy needs to be created to avoid the mishandling of such a serious act as laying someone off. I learned that by moving so quickly, then we might overshoot viable options like incentives that would allow employees to exit with dignity," Education Austin co-president Ken Zarifis said during the public comment portion of the meeting.
As KUT News has reported, the idea was proposed a week ago by At-Large Trustee Annette Lovoi as a way to alleviate the pain of eliminating more than 1,100 jobs. She proposed the idea after hearing about a similar plan in Dallas. But in DISD, two-thirds of those who left has more than 20 years experience.
"We're going to be losing some good people, but either way, we're losing people," DISD spokesman Jon Dahlander told KUT News.