This commentary originally appeared in the Austin American-Statesman on September 1, 2015.
By Michael LaFaive and James Quintero
Money that could be spent on classroom supplies and textbooks is being lost to the educational bureaucracy, according to a new survey of Texas school districts.
The new statewide survey of Texas’ 1,025 independent school districts, prepared by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, a Michigan-based research institute, sought to find out how many school districts — if any — are getting the most bang for their buck by contracting out noninstructional services, like transportation, food, and custodial work. What the survey found is that there’s a almost-universal need for improvement in the current spending structure, with lots of potential upside for classroom kids.
LaFaive is director of the Morey Fiscal Policy Initiative for the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Quintero is the director of the Center for Local Governance at the Texas Public Policy Foundation.