AISD Employees Speak Up About Affordable Housing


As the cost of living in Austin continues to balloon, teachers and educational support staff increasingly report struggling with finances. Teachers report having to moonlight at coffee shops, craft stores, and other night-time jobs just to make ends meet. Austin ISD employees report struggling with skyrocketing rents.

Megan Whalon, Education Austin Steward and French teacher spoke to local news station KEYE regarding the struggles teachers in AISD face.

A developer building in the Bull Creek neighborhood has taken these struggles into consideration in their designs for the project. They report that there will be affordably priced units specifically intended to house Austin ISD teachers and their families.

The offer of housing at a lower price point is welcome news for teachers like Ms. Whalon. “This is my 6th year teaching in Austin ISD, and I’ve moved almost every year to try and find cheaper rent because everywhere I live rent keeps going up and up every year.”

But she’s disappointed that teachers need housing assistance. She says, “Yeah. I think it’s a really cool idea. It’s a good thing that they want to try and help the teachers. But I think it’s sad they can’t pay us a salary that we can afford to buy a house because I don’t know if and when I’ll be able to buy a house on a teacher’s salary.”

 ‪#‎EdAustin‬ ‪#‎UnionProud‬…/west-austin-development-promises-afford…

One comment

  1. I realize that this report was done two years ago with Megan Whalon an AISD teacher and affordable housing. But still there has been no change. As a AISD teacher myself, the question is always, where do we draw the line? I look at prices daily rising in Austin but yet our income hasn’t changed. Between the high cost of livinging and health care there is no way to survive on AISD pay. If you have a family and work for AISD, just about 80 to 90% of your check goes to heath insurance. Then families have to get two or three jobs just to make ends meet. After my divorce six years ago things change drastically for me. I went from a household of two incomes to one. I had to make a choice in order to keep me and my two kids heads above water. I lost my car and I had to result in food pantries and snap. I also had to result in riding the bus and depending on others to get around for a year.

    And talk about AISD wanting to maybe build affordable houses to help with 19 AISD families. Not acceptable. That is such a slap in the face of all the dedicated, hard and loyal workers. Because I didn’t and still don’t make enough to rent a home less know buy one. So I rent an apartment in which your payment goes up ever six to nine months. Along with all the bills that come with it. I would love to continue to live without a roommate but is this really going to be a choice in my furture working with AISD? I see the struggle everday within myself and my co-workers. And the talk of retirement is differently on our minds.

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