Sunday, January 22, 2012

How we got where we are Part XXXV (October 2009)

On another post Anonymous wrote:

"How we got where we are, part 35, October 2009

October 21, 2009: Seemingly oblivious to the fiscal warnings delivered loud and clear in public at least since April 2008, the Roosevelt/Lane/Fischetti/Weiss administration recommends that the Board “enter into a contract with Gallup Consulting to utilize their online assessment tool, Teacherlnsight. Galllup's research-based selection and development tool, supported through over 30 years of teacher research, would support our district to find more teachers who drive student engagement and achievement.”

Much like the PELA program before it, anyone with even a moderate working knowledge of econometrics can only scratch their head in wonder as PPS gears up to hire more teachers when the trajectory of declining enrollment coupled with flat/declining local, state and federal resources would suggest the need to plan for a smooth landing, capturing as much value from naturally occurring retirements and resignations so that biblical layoffs at one time would not be necessary.

Printing its own newspaper remained a PPS priority, as the Board authorized “its proper officers to renew the contract with Grant Communications Consulting Group to continue working with Communications and Marketing to produce two issues for publication in the Spring and Fall of 2010. Services provided include writing, photography, layout and design as well as coordination of printing and mailing. Development of story ideas and editorial approval of all newsletter content are the responsibility of the Division of Communications and Marketing. Grant Communications Consulting Group has worked with the Division of Communications and Marketing since 2007 to produce The Pittsburgh Educator.

And yet no school year could be started without all students receiving a glossy picture of Superintendent Mark Roosevelt. The Board agrees and renews “the contract with Blanc Printing Company for printing, assembly, design, editing and pre-production and mailing services for the 2010 - 11 welcome back-to-school materials” at a cost not to exceed $202,993.

Fresh off of two already Board approved trips in October 2009 – and clearly quite concerned that perhaps she was spending too much time in schools – Dr. Lane seeks Board approval for another professional development trip to participate in the Developing Teachers colloquium in October 2009 and again in early November at the Strategic Management of Human Capital Conferences. Perhaps this is a sign that we should take her seriously as Superintendent when she says she hasn’t been part of the review conversation of any particular Board action item; it may well be that she was on the road at taxpayers' expense.

The internal financial statements again warn that “Significant efforts must be made to reduce operating costs.”

To be continued. This meeting is just warming up."

1 comment:

Questioner said...

Too bad MR discovered sustainability a few years too late.