City of Dallas likely to administer school crossing guard program

The City of Dallas will likely take over the crossing guard program for all Dallas ISD schools following the impending closure of Dallas County Schools.

The DCS Dissolution Committee approved a recommendation on Monday to hand the crossing guard responsibility to the City of Dallas in early 2018. About 375 crossing guards presently work outside Dallas ISD schools.

DCS CEO Alan King said the agency is out of money and can't afford to keep operating the $5 million dollar a year crossing guard program.

“We met with [the City of Dallas] last Monday and we had discussions on that. And in our meeting they acted like they were going to take it back,” King said.

Dallas city councilman Philip Kingston says DISD is better equipped to handle the program.

“They are the ones with all of the authority really under the state code, but they are not taking responsibility for it,” Kingston said.

A DISD spokeswoman disagrees and said the city managed the crossing guards until 2011, when DCS took it over. Now that DCS is out of the equation, DISD said the job kicks back to the city -- a responsibility she says is outlined in a city charter.

“I can understand DISD's portion of your tax bill is much larger than ours. And so I'm sure they don't want to increase it to then pay for crossing guards. I understand why they are sensitive to it, but to me it really is a schools issue,” Kingston said.

DCS officials said they are willing to keep administering the program for the final few months of the school year if the city pays the costs.

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