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Time to audit the Philadelphia School District

Time to audit the Philadelphia School District

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For months, I’ve advocated for detailed annual audits of the nearly $3 billion the Philadelphia School District spends. Despite efforts by City Controller Alan Butkovitz to make that happen, those audits still have not taken place.

Yet when I spoke with Dr. William Hite, the district superintendent, in a radio interview nearly nine months ago, he told me he was open to such audits being performed. However, when Butkovitz forwarded a draft resolution detailing the scope of the audits to the School District’s chief operational officer, Fran Burns, there was no response.

That’s not acceptable. When decades of white flight have left the district serving students who are mostly brown and poor, the remaining children and parents have a right to know why there are few nurses, few counselors and few teachers. They need to know why, despite a multibillion-dollar budget, there aren’t adequate classroom supplies.

They need to believe that the district will spend every dollar on educating children, even if most of the white kids are gone.

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Solomon Jones is an Essence bestselling author and award-winning columnist. He is the creator and editor of and morning host on 900 am WURD radio. Click here to learn more about Solomon.