The New York City Department of Education (DOE) took the lion's share of the federal Race to the Top (RttT) funds to pay for their own needs and only sent 22.5% to the schools, where the money was intended for. That's right, the greedy and bloated DOE bureaucracy took an astounding 77.5% of the RttT funds. The Independent Budget Office (IBO) broke down the latest year available (2012-13) and found that the DOE Central Bureaucracy took an astounding $83,327 million dollars from the RttT compared to only $24,195 million dollars. Unbelievable but true.
Contained in the IBO report the money sucking and useless Children First Network received $1.24 million dollars of the RttT funding. Money that could have more efficiently used to hire more teachers or provide more resources at the schools that could have helped the students. Worse, $13.425 million dollars went for high priced consultants and questionable contracts that had little or no noticeable impact on the schools. Finally, $17.578 million went to purely DOE Central Bureaucracy functions and salaries. The entire IBO report can be found here and the RttT breakdown is on page 27 of the report.
Reading the IBO report is really eye opening since it provides statistics that shows the priorities of the DOE and its not about the students. For example since 2008, the total DOE budget increased 10.3% while principals were experiencing an average budget reduction of 14.3% over the same time period. Moreover, the number of principals increased from 1,283 at the start of the Bloomberg Administration to 1,650, a 29% increase. By contrast, for teachers the number has dropped from 78,882 in 2008 to 73,789 in 2013, or a drop of 7%. For general education teachers the reduction is 14% The report also showed an increase in class sizes throughout the years and tor 2013 is the highest during the Bloomberg Administration. Finally, the teacher turnover rate for the latest five year period was 62% and 20% for one year. These teacher turnover rates are an indication of the hostile classroom environment created by the Bloomberg Administartion.
Its obvious that unless Mayor Bill de Blasio "cleans house" at the DOE, the IBO report shows that its still "children last" and DOE Central Bureaucracy first when it comes to the nyc public schools.
In the Abbott and Costello skit called "the loan" represents the DOE and the schools when it comes to funding with Abbott being the DOE Central Bureaucracy and Costello being the schools.