Monday, June 12, 2006

Facility Study Flaws

RUSD has been justifiably criticized for the excessive use and cost of consultants. The most recent example is the Paulin facilities study, the results of which were presented to the school board tonight. The study has cost over $1.2 million. Despite the high cost of the study, there were some rather evident flaws. For example, the study did not provide any options. With a price tag of $375 million for the full implementation of the recommendations, it would seem likely that the school board will at least need to consider alternatives to the recommendations offered by Dr. Paulin. No alternative suggestions were provided.

This news did not appear to sit well with school board member Randy Bangs, who pressed the issue with Dr. Paulin. He asked whether it might be more cost effective in the long run to build a new building rather than to renovate an old building. Dr. Paulin's response: "it could be". One would think that a $1.2 million facilities study might just address that critical question.

Another flaw in the study was discussed by board member Armin Clobes. Mr Clobes criticized the lack of important and easily accessible demographic data. Despite obvious population shifts from the city to suburban areas, which would presumably be a factor in long range facilities planning, the study did not factor in these changes, citing an inability to access the information.


Brenda said...

RUSD has wasted money before, but this has got to be the most flagrant abuse of tax dollars ever!

Denis Navratil said...

I didn't think it could get worse. But it has.

realdebate said...

You ain't seen nuthin' yet.

Mrs. Carly-Anne Ravnikar said...

I couldn't agree more. In my research I have seen a lot of concern about the wasted money in the system.

There was a study done in 2000 by a professor at UW-Parkside that looked into public opinion, and there has been research conducted by gateway. There are so many community resources that we could be taking advantage of when conducting studies. The sociology department at UW-P is amazing, and there are always students willing to do the footwork. I would be inclined to bridge community ties to unified, and to look for alternatives before thinking about HUGE expenditures.

Perhaps this wouldn't have been an option for this particular study, but I wonder if we are really looking at the cost in a fiscally responsible manner. Are we using the money in the best ways possible? For such a huge number, folks are really going to need to see something huge come out of it.It sounds like most people are not impressed.

I really enjoy your blog, Denis!