LA JOYA, Texas (ValleyCentral) — After a school board executive session last week, La Joya ISD board members approved the Staffing Adjustment Plan.

“It’s not something that I think that anybody that’s sitting on this board wants to do, but I think we are faced with a very, very tough decision,” says La Joya ISD School Board Member Esmeralda Solis.

According to La Joya ISD, the district has seen a significant decrease in student enrollment due to an increase in charter schools.

Slow growth in jurisdiction and the pandemic are also playing a role.

Despite the decrease in student enrollment, the number of employees have remained around the same — costing the district millions of dollars.

La Joya ISD Superintendent Gisela Saenz says, “Our district is overstaffed by as many as 300 employees at a cost exceeding $20 million when compared with average peer districts.” 

Saenz says these job cuts are necessary in order to keep current salaries, provide employee raises, invest in future technologies and maintain aging infrastructure.

Solis adds, “If we do not move forward with this plan, it’s going to start affecting our children, our students and the programs that service them.” 

La Joya ISD says that through this plan, the district is confident they can achieve long-term financial stability and ensure there is no loss of learning from students.