Donna Independent School District board members made sweeping decisions Wednesday night to deal with overstaffing problems bogging down the district's finances.
At a special meeting, trustees voted to cut 115 jobs and slice the hours of hundreds more before the start of the school year.
All the cuts are in non-teaching areas like maintenance, security, custodial and several other departments.
For those who do not lose their jobs, most will receive a reduction in hours.
Superintendent Roberto Loredo said the cutbacks are necessary for other projects to happen in Donna ISD, like building a new high school.
"I always said with the bond issue, 'how are we going to support a new high school if we don't have the money to support the one we have now,'" said Donna resident Raquel Martinez.
"You feel for the people that will be let go," explained resident Linda Estrada. "Especially people who have been with the district for a while. In the long run, it is to save the district. Bottom line. We are here because of the children."
Donna ISD is the city's largest employer.