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The Board of Trustees approved a Voluntary Exit Incentive Program that is expected to save the Harlingen Consolidated Independent School District $4.2 million during the 2011-2012 school year.

Trustees adopted a resolution during Tuesday night’s regular meeting that will seek the voluntary resignations of 70 full-time professional/contractual staff and 30 full-time hourly/at will staff.

The program will require employees to submit a signed letter of intent to resign, as well as a waiver and release agreement to the district’s Human Resource Department on Saturday, April 30, between 8 a.m. and noon.

“The implementation of the Voluntary Exit Incentive Program allows this district to conserve funds through attrition,” Superintendent Dr. Steve Flores said. “These are unprecedented times for this state’s public education. But we, as educators and education professionals, will continue to develop effective solutions to the impending revenue shortfall that limit the impact to our students.

“I am confident that our Board and our administration will continue to develop cost-saving strategies focused on job preservation and limiting the direct affect on classroom instruction,” Flores said.

HCISD will spend about $640,000 to fund the program that will pay eligible employees the lesser of two options, either $7,000 or 20 percent of their current gross salary.

Resignation dates for employees will begin at the end 2010-2011 school year. Incentive payments for qualified employees will begin 45 business days after the resignation effective date.

The Voluntary Exit Incentive Program includes the following exclusions and limits:

  • Substitute and/or part-time employees are excluded
  • Employees that are funded through discretionary grants are excluded
  • Employees hired on or after September 1, 2010 are excluded
  • Any employee who has resigned in lieu of termination during the 2010-2011 school year is excluded

The Voluntary Exit Incentive Program also includes the following participation limitations:

  • No more than 3 eligible bus drivers
  • No more than 4 eligible computer technicians
  • No more than 3 eligible child nutrition employees
  • No more than 4 eligible high school math teachers
  • No more than 4 eligible high school science teachers

Lawmakers currently project a revenue shortfall for public education between $4 and $9 billion, which would equate to a cut in funding for HCISD between 5 and 10 percent, which translates to $5 and $10 million.

To view the entire resolution, click here.

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