STANDARD 5: A School System Has Improved Productivity.
Productivity refers to the relationship between system input and output. A school system meeting this standard of the PDK-CMAC Curriculum Management Audit is able to demonstrate consistently improved pupil outcomes, even in the face of diminishing resources. Improved productivity results when a school system is able to create a consistent level of congruence between major variables in achieving enhanced results and in controlling costs.
What the Auditors Expected to Find in the Clover Park School District
While the attainment of improved productivity in a school system is a complex process, caused in part by the lack of a tight organizational structure (referred to as “loosely coupled”), common indicators of a school system meeting this audit standard are:
Planned and actual congruence among curricular objectives, results, and financial allocations,
A financial data base and network that are able to track costs to results, provide sufficient fiduciary control, and is used as a viable data base in making policy and operational decisions,
Specific means that have been selected or modified and implemented to attain better results in the schools over a specified time period,
A planned series of interventions that have raised pupil performance levels over time and maintained those levels within the same cost parameters as in the past,
School facilities that are well-kept, sufficient, safe, orderly, and conducive to effective delivery of the instructional program, and
Support systems that function in systemic ways.
Overview of What the Auditors Found in the Clover Park School District
This section is an overview of the findings that follow in the area of Standard Five. The details follow within separate findings.
The auditors found that budget procedures are not program-based, driven by diagnosed differential needs of students, or connected to results. Funding was adequate, but cost-benefit information about expenditures and programs was not available. The budget process is characterized by domination by a select few administrative personnel without benefit of participatory decision-making with principals and teachers. This absent connection makes it very difficult to make decisions based upon educational needs.
Facilities were found to be adequate, but some schools had serious problems. Maintenance at some schools was found to be deficient at a couple of elementary schools and at a couple of middle schools. One high school showed evidence of poor maintenance and cleanliness in interior areas.
Site-based management processes were adopted by the school system, fostering decentralization across schools. However, this has resulted in fragmentation and ineffective responses to learner
In addition, interventions at schools were excessive
demonstrated little knowledge of results. without justification.
number (nearly 30 the benefit, programs
in all) and may persist
Finding 5.1: Budget Procedures and Processes Are Neither Performance-based Nor Connected to Diagnosed Differential Needs of Students.
A budget is the major financial planning document for expressing in dollars the goals and priorities of the district. As such, it should reflect a direct connection between the resources provided and the criticality of the goals towards which those resources are directed. System-wide productivity is
Clover Park School District Audit Report Page 98