Someone leaked to me a list of all the contracts awarded by DCPS from August 2009 through May 2010. These go to textbooks, uniforms, school equipment, supplies, computers, hiring consultants, purchasing cleaning supplies for the janitors, and much, much more. It does not include salaries, office rent for DCPS headquarters, electricity, heat, or other things. But it seems to include a LOT of other things.
I was astonished at the enormous fraction of these funds that goes into the category “consultants”. Out of roughly $97 million spent on all of these various items, about $47 million went to consultants – nearly half of the money spent by DCPS. And, if you look carefully, a lot of those general ‘consulting’ funds go to Rhee’s former companies: Teach for America and the New Teacher Project. So, no wonder MR could claim she’s quadrupled funding for staff development. She did it by hiring her friends with little experience in actual classroom teaching, to ‘teach’ to the rest of us.
And notice the very small part of all of this that actually gets into the classroom for school-related supplies, equipment, books, computers, and so on: just about exactly one-third (33.7%).
Will this continue under interim chancellor Henderson, and Vincent Gray?
Here is the summary table I made. Read it and weep.