Monday, June 15, 2020

State Auditor: Ed Money Went to the Suits

State Auditor Shadrick Blanc issued the following statement. 

Classroom teachers in Mississippi were given smaller dollar-amount pay raises, on average, than superintendents, deputy superintendents, and assistant principals from FY 2013 to 2016 according to a report released today by State Auditor Shad White. (KF: The report is not posted below.  Click on the link.).  


“We have some great school districts doing an excellent job putting money into teachers and the classroom, but the overall data clearly show a concerning trend,” said Auditor White. “We as parents, taxpayers, and teachers need to demand that money be spent closest to the students.”

The report also showed the ratio of deputy superintendents to students increased compared to the same ratio for teachers since 2013.

“Mississippi is not doing considerably worse than our peer states that we surveyed for this report, and that is a good thing,” added White. “But we’ve got to be better stewards of public education funds than our surrounding states if we’re going to catch up.”

This latest report is one in a series that started in April 2019 from the Auditor’s office on public education spending. “I was educated in our public schools from kindergarten to my graduation from a Mississippi public university, and my mother was a public school teacher here for 35 years, working on her feet, every day. My grandmother and grandfather met as public school teachers in Mississippi. I have a deep, personal commitment to making sure money is spent effectively in our schools,” said White.

The April 2019 report from the Auditor’s office showed Mississippi’s spending on administrative costs has gone up faster than spending on instruction over the last ten years. The November 2019 Auditor’s report showed Mississippi spends more money outside the classroom than most other states in the South. Auditors also found spending per student on teachers’ salaries has gone down by 3% over the last ten years, but spending on administrator pay has gone up 10% after adjusting for inflation.

As a next step, the Auditor’s office is launching a pilot project with three school districts around the state in June, using the latest data analytics technology to identify administrative cost-savings that can be pumped back into teachers and the classroom. The project will be complete in early 2021.

Reports – including all three education briefs – can be found by searching under the “Reports” tab at www.osa.ms.gov.



42 comments:

Anonymous said...

What is it that the "suits" do these days? They don't want to deal with unruly kids, they are afraid to offend parents, they don't typically back teachers who demand good behavior in their classroom. So what exactly do all of these "suits" do?

Anonymous said...

So the people most responsible for the bad decisions got the largest pay increase? Let's use public education as a perfect example of how government is the worst at providing services and management.
An absolute disgrace. Kids could do better watching Khan Academy for 6 hours a day.

Anonymous said...

Public education is a con game. No more than a babysitter service for most kids and parents. I remember sitting in car drop off/pickup lines in Ridgeland seeing Rankin and Hinds County tags all the time. Not just on an occasion, but daily and continued the next year. They want to send their kids here, fine, just pay an additional fee. We, as taxpayers, need to get more for our money than seeing folks getting rich who have no concern for the kids.

Anonymous said...

That's par for the course. Those in charge take care of themselves first. No different than when I was working for the local district. Rank-and-file teachers got only what the legislature approved while administration and coaches would be singled out for getting even more from the local funds.

And of course the principals, who were getting older, argued they needed more assistant principles to handle the work load. It is a huge waste. And in my county we have the county school and two separate municipal schools. Total student population of all schools is about 4,000 and we have three superintendents, three assistant superintendents, three curriculum coordinators, three finance officers, three food service coordinators, three athletic directors, three of every kind of coach, etc. There could easily be a million dollars in savings by consolidating the districts.

Education is an absolute racket that needs reform from top to bottom.

Anonymous said...

I understand that if the "suits" make a higher salary, then an increase of the same percentage among all employees means the "suits" receive a higher dollar amount. That should not be hard for everyone to understand.

However, if you really want to see how much education lobby really wants to support a pay raise for educators, introduce a bill offering a pay raise to ONLY classroom teachers, counselors, and administrative staff...no raises for principals or superintendents. Or a bill where any additional funds given to education, 90% must go to classroom instruction and it must be audited.

See who gets behind that.

Anonymous said...

In my next life I want to come back as a deputy superintendent

Anonymous said...

Was this just in Jackson Public Schools or did it happen in whitehavens like the Neverland of Niknar?

Anonymous said...

LOL, Rankin County wanting to send their kids to Ridgeland? Possibly work vehicles? Rankin County has one of the best school districts in the state.

Anonymous said...

phil bryant is the worst of all time- and i voted for him

Anonymous said...

There is a ridiculous amount of administration in all school systems these days. Many serve no purpose whatsoever except to provide a higher pay landing spot for state employees to do their last few years of "service" so that they can maximize their retirement pay from PERS.

Anonymous said...

Consolidation of districts is a must! We cannot continue to pay all of these administrative salaries for such small districts that could easily be combined.

I know that it will be a tough fight, but lets be real. We have 82 counties, do we really need any more than maybe 90 school districts at most? I'm being kind here. We actually need less than 82.

Reduce the number of districts, and that will force a reduction in duplicate staff all over the state. Maybe some of those administrators can go back to the classroom or move on.

Anonymous said...

@8:41, financially we need consolidation. We are too top heavy, in general. There simply is no excuse for the duplications of staffing. But, will consolidation produce better student outcomes? Doubtful.

What gets lost in all of this is the myriad of federal/state administrative and reporting requirements that have been heaped upon the districts and schools over the past two decades. You need to measure to manage but the law of diminishing returns still applies. Much of that now demanded from districts/schools is superfluous reporting garbage.

Anonymous said...

as a former teacher 8:07 poses a good question.

Anonymous said...

All you gotta do is get a mail-order PhD and go from making $35k in the classroom to $100k as an administrator. Pay to play in a way.

Now, ask me what does a PhD in Administration do to qualify a person to run a large organization? How many businesses in American are run by PhD's? Less than 1/10th of one percent.

Education is a hoax.

Anonymous said...

A lot of jealous comments on this post. It really isn't any of your business what the salaries of these administrators are. Same with the local energy cooperatives and other utilities. Just because you can't figure out how to earn $300,000 to $850,000 a year in Mississippi doesn't mean we shouldn't.

Anonymous said...

Who are, and what do the suits do?

In K-12 and higher education....here's exactly what they do: They smile, walk around, and attend time-killing committee meetings where nothing is ever actually accomplished. They TALK incessantly about accountability and transparency, but what you're really seeing is that they are are some of the very best bullshit artists in the state. A college president could have a kid of theirs dealing drugs on campus, but shhhhh. There's zero integrity....but they preach integrity and moral behavior. The hypocrisy is surreal.

The suits are constantly looking and maneuvering for their next level of advancement, and are prayerfully hoping to never be exposed for how talentless and expendable they truly are. They just keep moving around, survive a few years until the next change of leadership, and it buys them even more time to survive, but then the new guy/girl (making $200,000 a year mind you) doesn't have a clue of who the bad apples are, so they actually listen to the kiss-ups....and good people leave while life-long bureaucrats fail upwards.

Many billions in tax dollars over the last few decades underpin this shell game that plays out daily in Mississippi's so-called educational system. And the icing on the cake? The IHL Board fully endorses the lawful extortion (i.e. state and federal taxes - for education of...the children, the children, the children) and provides the political cover for it all to keep rolling on.

Finally, this is all accomplished by the "suits" instilling fear into any and all staff or faculty who dare whisper a word about the bullshit going on with the very real threat of economic assassination. Play the game, or you're out of a job. It's truly a RICO case if someone ever wanted to make one....but both US Attorneys are bought and paid for, and have political aspirations in Mississippi.....so even they play the game. Smile, whisper, nod..."We're one of you. We won't go to far...."

10:42am is absolutely right about the crappy "doctorates" earned that land those $80-90-100 grand jobs. Those are who the suits are.

Anonymous said...

10:48 It is my tax dollars going to pay for these salaries and the officials I elected that are on the school boards or appoint the school boards that approve these salaries. That does make it my business.

Anonymous said...

Bob Slydell: If you would, would you walk us through a typical day, for you?
Peter Gibbons: Yeah.
Bob Slydell: Great.
Peter Gibbons: Well, I generally come in at least fifteen minutes late, ah, I use the side door–that way Lumberg can’t see me, heh–after that I sorta space out for an hour.
Bob Porter: Da-uh? Space out?
Peter Gibbons: Yeah, I just stare at my desk, but it looks like I’m working. I do that for probably another hour after lunch too, I’d say in a given week I probably only do about fifteen minutes of real, actual, work.

Anonymous said...

Covid is going to seriously hurt private schools. More people will have to put their kids in public schools or their 401k will dry up.
More kids and less pay.

Anonymous said...

It's simple to understand. Most public school boards nowadays create positions for family, friends, etc. All those positions have very little to do with educating the children.
Not always the case, but check out Natchez/Adams as an example

Anonymous said...

@11:22
Then you should also demand the salaries of administrators of institutions of higher learning. Salaries of administration at every hospital that accepts Medicare/Medicaid. Don't forget defense contractors. Ingalls is basically a guant maelstrom of tax money.

The compensation earned by an individual who has worked hard and reached the pinnacles of their field is not your business.

Why don't you go focus on welfare queens driving luxury cars while sporting $500 hairstyles even though their kids qualify for free lunch?

Anonymous said...

One "suit" on Highland Colony parkway has to wear the Sopranos bowling team shirts because he is so fkn fat.

Anonymous said...

@12:58pm I agree with you.

It WOULD be interesting to do a study on all those "high level" public positions, how much they make, and how so many of them in Mississippi are Caucasian. Hmmmmm....I'll bet it's 90+%. Kind of like the Legislature and other Executive officers....lily white....when the state is 40% black.

Anonymous said...

12:58 John Davis, is that you? That's exactly the attitude over expenditures at government agencies that gave us the TANF scandal. Pesky citizens expecting their tax dollars to be spent efficiently. Don't they know their place?

Fat and Happy said...

12:58 and 1:21 -- Do you expect me to move over so you can get at the trough?

Anonymous said...

The ratio of students to suits is absolutely meaningless. They never interact with students unless they cruise through the lunch room on the way to the peanut butter cookie tray.

Anonymous said...


8:39 a.m. wrote:

"Public education is a con game. No more than a babysitter service for most kids and parents. I remember sitting in car drop off/pickup lines in Ridgeland seeing Rankin and Hinds County tags all the time. Not just on an occasion, but daily and continued the next year. They want to send their kids here, fine, just pay an additional fee. We, as taxpayers, need to get more for our money than seeing folks getting rich who have no concern for the kids."

He's right. I remember driving on Jackson streets and highways and seeing Rankin and Madison tags all the time. Not just on an occasion, but daily and continued every day. They want to send their kids to school in Rankin and Madison and then come to work here, fine, just pay an additional fee for tearing up our roads and clogging up Lakeland Drive, I-55, I-20, I-55m and I-220 every morning and evening. We, as Jackson/Hinds County taxpayers, need to get more for our money than seeing folks getting rich working in Jackson and then bad-mouthing Jackson every chance they get while they tear up our roads.

Anonymous said...

Is " suits" another code word for white privilege?

Asking for a friend, but then most of public school admins
aren't white?

Anonymous said...

"The compensation earned by an individual who has worked hard and reached the pinnacles of their field is not your business."

Well; Not unless I'm paying it..which I am.

Anonymous said...

The school system is a total disaster. Those in administration should really be embarrassed by the failure to teach, to discipline and produce work/life ready students.

Of course the schools are not totally to blame since most parents are unwilling or unable to discipline or teach their children.

Plus, many teachers are a product of the same schools and well, you get what you get.

Anonymous said...

12:58- Wrong!

Anonymous said...

4:15 has it right. Too many people place blame on the teachers. Teaching is not a one-way street. If you have students uninterested and undisciplined outside the classroom, you have little chance to get anything across. While I do think administrators are overpaid (especially in the Jackson Public Schools), until we get parents and guardians to add their part, no amount of money you throw in the pot will make it better.

Jackson is a Hellscape said...

@3:14
Lakeland Drive is Highway 25. And the interstates are maintained with federal dollars. Jackson contributes Zero dollars to maintenance. It is all MDOT and the federal government.

We can't move offices out of Jackson fast enough. Your violent hellscape has become a deadly liability to people who work for a living.

Anonymous said...

Batman

Anonymous said...

Anyone that is att all familiar wit the structure of county School boards and or school administrators in general that won’t admit there is overstuffing at every level is either dumber than a rock or holds one of those positions.

Anonymous said...

I still want Shad to provide specificity. What admins is he talking about? Give us names dates and places.

The legislature says the average teacher in Mississippi now makes $46,500 per year, and starting pay is $38,000.

What are the principles in Hinds, Madison and Rankin making? And assistants? And attendance principles?

Anonymous said...

10:59 The Mississippi Department of Education used to provide those statistics. They produced a report that listed the average salary by position, the number of people in each position, and even broke it down by elementary, middle, and high school. You could see superintendent, assistant superintendent, principal, assistant principal, classroom teacher, vocational teacher, special education teacher, librarian, and other classes too. Each school district was listed separately.

I guess that was too much information for the public to have because they dropped that report years ago even though they still collect the same data from the districts.

Anonymous said...

It should all be public and updated in real time. DOE is corrupt to the bone in hiding all information relate to operations. It is deliberate, you can be well assured.

Anonymous said...

This Democrat wants to say I think Shad White is doing a great job as Auditor. He is smart, fearless and a truth teller. I cannot wait to watch him in action for the next four years.

Anonymous said...

@5:49 Get a job at Nissan and then you won't have to come to Jackson to work. It's that simple. Don't whine; do something about it.

Anonymous said...

For some reason Howdy Doody White seems shocked that the money went to the suits. Public education teachers have been saying that for years. It is the teachers that are in the trenches. They work hard everyday to make sure children get the best opportunities they can. They love their jobs and they love their students. I know this because I was a public education teacher for 30 years.

Anonymous said...

Maybe when Shad is Governor, he'll have more balls that Tate to take on the idiots in the Legislature, and veto every damn thing they do to force them to expose their agendas.

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