The battle cry of the education industry is “we need more money!” I’ve noted before that there seems to be an inverse relationship between the amount of money spent on education and actual results, and this morning I see a rather graphic example of just what sorts of things one can expect when you throw more and money at school systems.
The state of Massachusetts has just completed an audit of just how the city of Everett spends its money, and it’s appalling. They uncovered over half a million dollars that was spent in — to put it kindly — “questionable” means and causes. They found bids submitted — and won — by companies long out of business. And rampant cronyism of the likes that would make even a Chicago politician blush.
A couple examples:
* $59,000 budgeted to help students prepare for state assessment tests went to lettering football helmets, a homecoming parade, and a slew of other pet causes.
* $180,000 in legal fees to a lawyer who can’t seem to explain just what work he did for that money.
* $64,000 for two homecoming parades.
* $830,000 in grants to hire new teachers instead went into raises for existing staff.
But I’m sure it’ll all be OK. After all, it was all done for the children.