Action Plan For The School District Of Philadelphia

Submitted By fgriffin
Words: 688
Pages: 3

THE Closing of Schools Schools all over the country are being shut down due to a lack of funding. Here in Philadelphia, the superintendent announced that 37 schools will be closed and others combined. Dr. William R. Hite released an Action Plan for the School District of Philadelphia. In this plan, Dr. Hite declares his two anchor goals. The two anchor goals are to improve outcomes for students in all schools and ensure the financial stability and sustainability of the School District. You may be asking, “What is the problem?” “Why are schools being closed and combined?” There is a myriad of problems. Some of the problems are: a lack of funding, underutilization, facilities, and underperformance. I will give you a synopsis and examples of the problems that I just listed.
Lack of Funding

“We recommend that we borrow $300 million to finance our deficit for FY 2013 and part of FY 2014, because at this point the initiatives left to us to cut costs to achieve fiscal balance will take that long to implement. We must proceed with the greatest care; a deficit borrowing is an extraordinary action that we will not be able to undertake again in this planning horizon. Under the best of circumstances, we will be living with the payment obligations of this financing for some time to come, adding an estimated $22 million each year to our already significant debt service burden. And so we must make sure that we use the time this money buys to truly rebuild our financial underpinnings.”
This is what Thomas E. Knudsen (Chief Recovery Officer and Acting Superintendent) said in Proposed Five Year Financial Plan Fiscal Years 2013-2017. He basically is saying that the school district has a deficit and that they plan on borrowing $ 300 million. He also said that even at its best, the school district would be paying $22 million each year on top of their deficit.

“We recommend closing a number of school buildings because they are underutilized and in poor condition, and the money we are spending on heating, cooling, cleaning, and repairing empty, dilapidated space could be better spent on teaching and learning. We realize that this may create confusion and disruption for many families, and so we take on this task seeking to ensure a better utilized system that will better serve our children. This will mean, in particular, paying close attention to the academic performance of school programs and separating them from the state of the buildings the programs happen to be in. Quality school programs must be preserved, even if their buildings must change.” Again, these are words from Thomas E. Knudsen in Proposed Five Year Financial Plan Fiscal