Dallas Independent School District

www.dallasisd.org
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Dallas Independent School District Reviews

Updated July 7, 2015
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Dallas Independent School District Superintendent Mike Miles
Mike Miles
17 Ratings

Pros
  • i really like working with students (in 3 reviews)

  • The vacation time and paid time off is good but not any better than any other district in Dallas, Texas (in 4 reviews)

Cons
  • The central office is notorious for hiring their staff based on family or organizational connections (e (in 4 reviews)

  • The district pushed arbitrary policies and offered no support to teachers who were in need of help (in 4 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

23 Employee Reviews

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  1. Technology Applications Instructor

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Dallas, TX
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Dallas, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Supportive coworkers who try to ensure that students are successful in all subject areas

    Cons

    Lack of administrative support for teachers from Principals Disciplinary actions for students are not consistent

    Advice to Management

    Listen to input from teachers and implement changes when feasible.


  2. Campus Leadership : Principal

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - Campus Principal in Oak Cliff, TX
    Former Contractor - Campus Principal in Oak Cliff, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Dallas Independent School District as a contractor (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Competitive salary. Extensive Monetary resources pumped into campuses to spend carelessly, just so the deadline is met.

    Cons

    Instability, conflict, and lack of integrity cause chaos, poor employee morale, and consistent doubt. The district does not value its employees, their commitment, nor their passion for the students. And...don't you dare stand up nor defend the progress of your students. And...never question district leaders actions, as you will be targeted, despite the progress of your campus, commitment to your students, or excellent climate survey.

    Advice to Management

    Show your administrators, staff and students that you value their work, commitment, and PROGRESS. You all are backwards....its not just about results, its about inspiring students to have a vision of success, celebrating progress, and providing leaders that inspire students and motivate students through encouraging them, believing in them, and treating them with dignity. Its not about the numbers. Its not about data. Its about inspiring, empowering, and building successful adults.


  3. Limbo

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Contractor - Bilingual Elementary Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Former Contractor - Bilingual Elementary Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Dallas Independent School District as a contractor (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Love a place that wants you to "think differently and act courageously," while at the same time being told you must become the standardized Multiple Response Strategy teacher? DISD is the place for you. Thinking differently means the agony of wanting to try new things, strategies, and techniques that you spend time researching. Be careful, because acting courageously on these desires means going against the grain, here. Be ready to risk losing points on your evaluations. Get ready for a ride when this highly-subjective "objective rubric" is used for... or against you! Have a class of 20-something students and the one or two in the corner get distracted easily? You better believe this will be noted in your evaluation. Colleagues in the district agree: What if these kids are classified Special Education kids that have an attention disorder? It is not the rater's problem or concern - it is yours. If you're in desperate need of money and have no other choice, DISD is the place for you. Do you thrive in an environment where brownie-points can get you anywhere? DISD is the place for you. Want to know what it feels like to be a used-car salesman where there's hundreds of applicants pouring in every day and longevity is being turned into a bad thing from the past? DISD is the place for you!

    Cons

    The type of school and principal you end up with can be a lottery. Some schools are great, many are okay, but some schools will be just unbearable, do as much as research as you can. Basically, if you don't have anyone waiting for you at home at the end of the day and can devote your life for most of the year to someone else's kids - DISD is the place for you.

    Advice to Management

    "If the child cannot learn the way we teach, maybe we should teach in a way they learn." -Ignacio Estrada. Bottom line: The important thing is that the child learns, stop blaming the teacher for everything. Start PARENTING classes so that every year is not an uphill battle for teachers.


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  5. Helpful (2)

    Bad experience with little support

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Foreign Language Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Former Employee - Foreign Language Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Dallas Independent School District full-time

    Pros

    I was glad to just have a job. I enjoyed seeing my students build confidence in their language-learning abilities.

    Cons

    Major overcrowding in foreign language classes. I'm pretty sure the amount of students in my small classroom was a fire hazard. Lack of resources: We had to cancel a certain class before the first day of school because of a lack of materials. The students really would have benefitted from this particular class. Discipline needs improvement. Teachers can only do so much, we need help from parents and administration in the form of teaching proper classroom behavior. Overall, I would not recommend any of my friends or family to work in this sinking ship.

    Advice to Management

    Work on finding ways to improve parental involvement in the high school level. Make an attempt to understand the unique environment of a foreign language class so you can understand what your teachers need. Make sure teachers have a classroom phone. Let teachers close and lock their doors for safety purposes. Find effective solutions to overcrowding. The students are really suffering because of this. Consider hiring more former military veterans as teachers, especially in low performing schools.


  6. Helpful (3)

    Work at any school district but here until the Superintendent and the almost the complete Administration changes.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Former Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Current Employee - Former Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    They kids are wonderful to work with!

    Cons

    The Administration rules by bullying from the top down. One out of five administrators truly care about the kids and teachers, and are given are hard time because they do.

    Advice to Management

    School Board needs to fire the Superintendent and all the bullies he has hired. They need to rethink the new evaluation system, because it allows principals to fire teachers or bully them into quiting at their whim. They only want new teachers, and are forcing the veterans out because they have to pay them "too much". This is so sad for the students of DISD. The Administration is destroying this district.


  7. Helpful (8)

    Current administration seems to see student as widgets, not people with differing needs.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Teacher, Secondary School in Dallas, TX
    Current Employee - Teacher, Secondary School in Dallas, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Dallas Independent School District full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    There are still a lot of great teachers here who really care about students and their success. If you surround yourself with the right people and your principal supports real teaching rather than the factory assembly line methodology, you can still make a difference in student's life. If helping children is your number one priority and you are able to look past all the roadblocks put in place by top administration, this can be a rewarding place to work. The rewards of seeing the joy on a students face when he or she succeeds at something they have been working for has to be reward enough. Be prepared to live with a lot of unnecessary frustrations at the hands of top district administration.

    Cons

    The superintendent seems to think that teacher's are motivated by money. The sad thing is that even if we were, things are set up so that only a very small minority, if that, will ever receive top pay. This is the same system that was in place in Colorado before he came here. During the six years he was there, not one single teacher ever made it to the the top pay tier. If you are coming to Dallas thinking you will receive a high salary, you will be disappointed. The plan is to pay on a bell curve with preset numbers in place as to how many people are allowed to receive even a small salary increase. It feels like he sees teachers as a bunch of donkeys that will work hard as long as they can see a carrot dangling in front of their noses.. It is very important to me to do a good job wherever I work. A student's success in life is at stake and they are the ones that will pay the price for these poor management strategies that interfere with a teacher's ability to help students succeed. Although I am receiving very high ratings and have even been invited to participate in the Distinguished Teacher program, I believe that I could do more for my students. This system robs my time and energy and therefore hurts my students.The extra things they want done turn out to be very time consuming and do nothing to improve teacher effectiveness. In fact, they take time away from planning, grading and especially from working with students. There are a lot of extra meetings that are a total waste of time. In the past I would have spent this time tutoring students or communicating with parents. Now I am sitting in useless meetings and redundant training. The superintendent eliminated the district's program that helped teachers achieve National Board Certified status. He seems to think his few years (6 total) of experience teaching makes him more qualified to determine good pedagogy than the combined wisdom of the professional teachers on the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. Extensive research studies have shown Board Certified teachers to be highly effective in the classroom without the cookie cutter mentality our superintendent is so fond of pushing off on us. The environment is very negative with a "got ya" type of mentality. Frequent military type inspections (spot evaluations) are conducted. We are no longer trusted, valued or respected contributors to the district. Our opinions are ignored. Teachers who were supposedly part of the creation of the new evaluation system were given a copy of the finished product and told to basically rubber stamp it as nothing was going to be changed based on their input. They were given little choice to do anything other than comply if they wanted to keep their jobs. That is how little our knowledge and experience is valued. The superintendent is quick to take credit for anything good that happens whether he had any involvement in it or not and quick to blame someone else when things go wrong. Fear and intimidation rule and most teachers are in constant fear for their jobs. With so much conflicting information from district level trainers and coaches, it is not possible to know how to comply with district expectations. Many times we get completely different information from the district level coaches and local administration. It is the worst job environment I have ever experienced. I have several years of business experience prior to entering the teaching profession in various industries and have never seen anything remotely comparable to this. It takes a lot of self motivation to work here. With morale as low as it is, motivation has to come from within. Even with a great principle that still values his teaching staff, we have lost 30 to 40% of our very best teachers who are now benefiting the students in Mesquite and other surrounding districts. This leaves our much higher needs students with inexperienced Teach for America trainees, or worse, permanent substitutes. If all of these issues aren't bad enough, several "community members" with no educational training but with an eye on controlling state funding are trying to move the district to "home rule" status. This will allow the district to bypass many state regulations designed to protect students and teachers. Costs may decrease but at who's expense?

    Advice to Management

    Work with your most effective teachers. Give them real input to the decision making process. If you use their knowledge effectively, real reform can be achieved. This isn't about power trips. There is no one perfect way to teach. Be aware that every school, every class, every student, and even every teacher are different. Celebrate that diversity and use it to make this district the very best it can possibly be.


  8. Helpful (7)

    Present administration's attempt to uniform teaching.....regardless of your past/present successful accomplishments .

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Former Employee - Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    A Good, Dedicated District of teachers and most administrators...Excluding the Controversial Superintendent who appears to have a "personal agenda" that does not benefit the District students as well as its teachers.

    Cons

    Present Superintendent ........(read the blogs, etc)

    Advice to Management

    Replace Superintendent.......Proven Successful Teachers (as indicated by CEIs, etc,), should not have to change their successful teaching pedagogy just to satisfy the unproven and untested approach of a new and yet another Superintendent. The present Superintendent is horrible......READ THE BLOGS, ETC.


  9. Helpful (2)

    Dallas is full of politics

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Contractor - Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Current Contractor - Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Dallas Independent School District as a contractor (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    The only good thing about teaching in Dallas is June, July, and August

    Cons

    The company does not support teachers at all. They only support what they feel is best.

    Advice to Management

    Do not work here.


  10. Helpful (1)

    It was good until the last few years then it started to decline.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Former Employee - Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Dallas Independent School District full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Health benefits are decents and some of the schools are pretty good to work in.

    Cons

    No support from administration. Teachers work long and hard hours and get no support from the superintendent or school administration.

    Advice to Management

    Train your principals on how to talk to their teachers and staff personnel. Because some them talk to them like they have no feeling what soever.


  11. Helpful (3)

    The worst job I have ever had in my life! I am disgusted by it!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Bilingual Elementary Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Former Employee - Bilingual Elementary Teacher in Dallas, TX
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Dallas Independent School District full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    There are absolutely no pros!

    Cons

    Mike Miles is an ignorant. The principals are ignorant people who got cheap scholarships to study education (easy degree). They were really BAD teachers for three years, got their Master's in Education (yet another cheap scholarship and easy degree), got out of the classroom became Assistant Principals were bad in that area too and three years later Principals. So in reality they know nothing about the classroom and not much about academics either. This is why Mike Miles can brainwash them so easily. It is like dumb and dumber! Plus the pay was horrible, no increments, and now the threat that it will never change because we all suck (God know then how my students always performed well).

    Advice to Management

    Fire Mike Miles! As a City of Dallas property owner, I direct you to do it.



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