With more than 20,000 employees and more than 220 school campuses, staffing is not always a simple process at Dallas ISD.
Historically, a staffing tool known as leveling has generated some confusion. As a result, we have compiled a guide to help people understand the process.
What is leveling?
Leveling is the process in which the district transfers some teaching positions from one school to another after the school year has begun.
What are the benefits of leveling?
Leveling is required each fall to ensure the correct number of teaching positions are allocated to each campus.
Why does leveling happen?
Each spring, the district goes through an established process to project the number of students that each campus should have. The district then uses a staffing formula to determine how many teachers and what type of teachers (such as bilingual or special ed) are needed on each campus.
Starting in mid-September of each year, the district reviews the actual student enrollment for each campus. Since there is understandable fluctuation between the projected and actual student enrollment, as well as the unique needs of students (such as the number of bilingual students) on each campus, the district makes staffing adjustments to better serve all students throughout the district.
Do campus leaders have any say in the leveling process?
Absolutely. Campus leaders often make requests for additional teacher positions, or request that positions recommended for leveling remain in place, based on the specific needs of their campus. School leadership, Human Capital Management, and Finance then work together to find a balance between the needs of each campus and the financial position of the district, while working within the Board approved district budget.
Is leveling an easy process?
Not necessarily. While moving one teaching position from one campus to another may sound like a somewhat simple process, it becomes more challenging when various certifications and campus needs are considered. When this happens across more than 220 schools, it can get complicated fairly easy.
However, because the district’s financial reserves, also known as the fund balance, are at an all-time high due to careful management of campus resources, there is more flexibility within the budget to allow additional teacher positions to be requested in the budget so they can, in turn, be allotted to campuses to better support students.