Several Round Rock ISD community members voiced their opposition to the district's decision to eliminate library assistant positions, calling on board members to find a way to include these roles in the upcoming school year's budget.

RRISD teacher Tammy Conrad told the board that without library assistants, librarians would be tasked with the work of two people. She read from an email she said a colleague sent to the board regarding the announcement.

“She wishes that these people knew that librarians can do their job best when they have assistants to help them,” Conrad said.

In some cases, former teacher Rebecca Saucedo said, these library assistants are the only librarians at their campuses. Saucedo and Conrad are just two of many parents who voiced their support for retaining the position in RRISD.

This comes as the district told its library assistants April 12 that their positions had been eliminated and that they would be reassigned throughout the district as needed.

Maritza Gallaga, RRISD interim chief of public affairs and communication, said the move is largely due to the discontinuation of Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief funding. The federal monies were allocated by the district to fund some staffing positions in 2022. At the time, the district planned to absorb these positions into its regular budget.

“This now means that all positions and expenditures funded through ESSER have to be absorbed in the local budget in some way or eliminated,” Gallaga said. “Those factors, in addition to staffing needs, led to the difficult decision to adjust staffing to ensure that we as a district could continue to employ these individuals and balance the budget based on the assumptions for 2023-2024.”

Gallaga said the district is projecting more than $100 million in recapture for the 2022-23 school year—at least $30 million more than initially projected when the district's board of trustees approved its budget last June.

As the district continues through its budgetary process, officials are continuing to look for opportunities to utilize staffing flexibility, Gallaga said.

The district will be holding information sessions about this budget season at the end of April and beginning of May. To learn more, click here.