Austin ISD

  www.austinisd.org
  www.austinisd.org

Austin ISD Reviews

Updated October 20, 2014
Updated October 20, 2014
53 Reviews
3.3
53 Reviews
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Austin ISD Interim Superintendent Paul Cruz
Paul Cruz
2 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • The technology and resources available are great (in 3 reviews)

  • You get to work in a really great city, some schools offer novice teachers REACH mentors (in 9 reviews)


Cons
  • A great deal of school decisions take place in closed-door meetings without soliciting the input of teachers (in 2 reviews)

  • not compensated as well as private sector (in 2 reviews)

More Highlights

Employee Reviews

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  1.  

    Satisfying!

    Current Employee - Tutor in Austin, TX
    Current Employee - Tutor in Austin, TX

    I have been working at Austin ISD as a contractor (more than an year)

    Pros

    Friendly, great to work with kids, management is very lax.

    Cons

    some students don't wanna learn.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    they do a great job

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  2.  

    Teacher

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Teacher in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Teacher in Austin, TX

    I worked at Austin ISD full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    The technology and resources available are great. After working in other districts I can tell Austin ISD tries hard to keep up with it. Decent benefits.

    Cons

    In Austin a police officer makes a lot more than a teacher. Is that bad? Not really, but seems Austin has it a little more decent when deciding police wages. Teacher wages in Austin are considerably less compared to other big Texas cities such as Dallas, San Antonio, and so... And that is without accounting for the cost of living in a rather expensive city. I think the salaries AISD claim on their website to be competitive are only such when compared to rural areas or small towns in the vecinity.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Give your teachers a decent salary. Teachers in San Antonio make at least 5000$ more...

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3.  

    A very overall poor experience. It was honestly a nightmare.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - 6th Grade Teacher in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - 6th Grade Teacher in Austin, TX

    I worked at Austin ISD full-time

    Pros

    The best reason was getting a teaching job and educating the students that wanted to be helped. The mentor program for new teachers is nice too. They have a competitive salary. They offer lots of stipends for tutoring and other activities.

    Cons

    As a teacher, I truly felt unsafe. A student brought a knife to school and because it wasn't over 3 inches the student was not punished. I had a student stab another student in my classroom with a pencil in the STOMACH, and the admin did nothing because they thought they were "playing" even though I witnessed the incident. Lastly, I had a student threaten to rape me because I asked him to sit down in my classroom.The admin felt that this was something that he wouldn't act an, so he was given a slap on the wrist. It was impossible and frightening to teach there. I wish I had more support. I asked many times for the admin to come sit in my room and assist me. I had 33 + kids in a portable. It was a disaster. I left in the middle of October 2013.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
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  5.  

    Things have changed

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Teacher Assistant in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Teacher Assistant in Austin, TX

    I worked at Austin ISD full-time (more than 8 years)

    Pros

    It's great to work with the kids and see them growing both academically and socially. Working in Special Education is very rewarding. You have a number of holidays off in which you are paid and of course the summers, too. Because of inclusion, it can be fun to go to different classes to help your students.

    Cons

    A number of years ago, they initiated 'clocking in' as opposed to just signing in.. if you didn't sign in timely, your pay check reflected this. Also 2 days off were 'taken away' which means the salary is technically less. Benefits can be expensive for a family--actually cost prohibitive -and if you have any personal business to attend to, you have to take 4 hours off (and sometimes 8 hours)-even if you only need one or two hours off. There is also a lot of 'favoritism' from the supervisors with some the staff.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Instead of the tests being the way to evaluate the students' accomplishments, you need to focus on the individual classes and the success they have had in the class (more teacher input). Smaller class sizes is obviously the way to increase more student learning. Not all schools are 'created equal' and there needs to be more support in schools in which the 'scores' are low.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  6.  

    The education has changed so much. The focus of learning has been replaced by test scores.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Art Teacher in Austin, TX
    Current Employee - Art Teacher in Austin, TX

    I have been working at Austin ISD full-time (more than 10 years)

    Pros

    Best part of being an art teacher for AISD is the children. Art is the only time they can truly be themselves and express their feelings. Art is the time to discover who we are and communicate without worrying about mistakes or the boundaries of our imagination. It is a time to bloom, grow and feed our souls.

    Cons

    One of the biggest challenges I have experienced is keeping my student in the classroom to create their work. STARR testing has taken a priority over art. The teachers are stressed out and so worried about their performance and scores it takes the joy away for just being with our students.It saddens me to see some of the faces of the children and teachers during this time. Their is not joy or happiness in learning anymore.The training intense as well as the preparation for the children.There are some things like rallies and parades that we do to show that the entire school supports them, but very seldom do I see a smile.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    I know that this testing is mandatory, but we need to put into place techniques that help the teachers as well as the students to reduce the stress and anxiety that comes with testing; basic yoga and relaxation exercises.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Teacher

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Teacher, Elementary School in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Teacher, Elementary School in Austin, TX

    I worked at Austin ISD full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Very good benefits
    Great children, supportive families

    Cons

    Staff are territorial, and try to push out newcomers who do not comply to their ways
    Senior staff members are allowed to disobey the rules, be late, lazy, not help students 100%, but are the ones who are favored and represented against newer staff members
    For the schools I've worked at, pay is not enough for what I was expected to do and sacrifice- working weekends and from 7-7 sometimes.

    Hard work is not as praised as seniority and favoritism is.
    Would have up to 7 other adults in the classroom critiquing my teaching abilities and my classroom appearance, other times special education teachers would be in the room on their phones or talking to another teacher instead of assisting students.
    Not enough support

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    If you want to keep youthful, educated, hard working teachers, do more to foster their growth and praise their accomplishments.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  8.  

    Great potential, not so great leadership

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Teacher in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Teacher in Austin, TX

    I worked at Austin ISD full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Great coworkers, relaxed environment. The vast majority of the students were fantastic and of course time off was nice.

    Cons

    Absolutely no direction or guidance, huge drug problem left unaddressed by administration.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Leave your office every once in a while. Address drugs and truancy.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  9.  

    I taught 4 completely different classes in 3 different grades at 3 different schools during my first TWO years teaching.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Bilingual Elementary Teacher in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Bilingual Elementary Teacher in Austin, TX

    I worked at Austin ISD full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    You get to work in a really great city, some schools offer novice teachers REACH mentors.

    Cons

    The "leveling" process is brutal for everyone, especially the students. It was impossible to be a good parent AND a good teacher at this district. The demands of the job are just too great.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Truly check on your principals. They often go rogue and then place the blame on their faculty for their bad decisions and scores. For example, at 2 out of 3 schools I worked at, we were told to "do whatever it takes to pass the district walk-throughs" but to completely disregard the Dual Language program and revert to teaching our ELL students in the old sink-or-swim method of bilingual education. Principals have already decided the Dual Language program is a failure but have not given it the adequate time (OR RESOURCES!) to find out if it really does or doesn't work. Ultimately, the biggest losers in all of this are the very ELLs we were hired to help.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  10.  

    Politics, resistant to change, but good people nevertheless

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Austin, TX

    I worked at Austin ISD full-time (more than an year)

    Pros

    Stable place to work, get a lot of time off compared to non-ed jobs, generally nice people to work with. People here really care about the students and the district.

    Cons

    People hate change here, lots of politics, ability for dictator managers to do illegal HR practices and HR does nothing about it. Many people feel underappreciated here, which is not good.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Listen to your employees and stop sticking by senior management when they are in the wrong. Do more to make your employees feel appreciated (does not have to be monetary).

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Stressful work environment

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Bilingual Teacher in Austin, TX
    Current Employee - Bilingual Teacher in Austin, TX

    I have been working at Austin ISD full-time (more than 5 years)

    Pros

    steady paycheck, good insurance benefits

    Cons

    not enough time during the work day to do all the things that were expected us

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Focus on what is realistic for students cognitive abilities, as well as what is required from teachers based on the amount of work hours that are paid for.

    Doesn't Recommend

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