The data from CPS financial reports--covering the past 11 years--provide a glimpse into where CPS has been, is currently, and is headed.
Some items of note:
- the trend in total outstanding debt;
- the trend in actuarial unfunded pension liability; and,
- the trend in actuarial (un)funded ratio.
Not so, according to Chicago's politicians, government and union workers, and CPS personnel. No siree...everything will be fine...if CPS is only given more $$$s.
Hinz also deducted pension contribution and debt service from total expenditures to calculate how much CPS spends per pupil and per employee. Debt service for 2016 and 2016 are not included (no reason provided...probably not available).
It really doesn't matter. The simple fact is that CPS has not been operating in a fiscally sound manner for a very long time.
- Tax receipts to CPS have been steadily increasing yet enrollment has has steadily declined.
- The number of employees have decreased but expenditures haven't.
- Operational spendin--both per student and per employee--has increased roughly 50% over the past 11 years, roughly 200% the compounded CPI increase over the same period.
- The per employee pension contribution has increased 500%. while the unfunded liability has increased 300%
- Staffing is about the same as a Licensed Daycare Facility, 1:10, without the same quality of care.
- Most of those $$$s are going toward ever-increasing pension contributions. The 10-year trend in unfunded pension liabilities is staggering. Worse yet, big $$$s have been shoring up underfunded pensions yet they remain underfunded and, with an increasing lifespan, the losses incurred will only get worse for Illinois taxpayers.
Ask the pols and folks at CPS about these facts and the trend they reveal, they'll both respond: "It's all for the kids!"
In the private sector, a CEO and entire leadership team would be fired for this dismal record of performance. Forget the fiscal irresponsibility, that's bad enough. But, standardized testing demonstrates something even worse: No return on investment evidenced in the abysmal performance by CPS students.
Any wonder why attendance at CPS is on a death spiral? Those who can leave, have left. Those who can afford private schools, have written checks. Left behind is the cesspool called CPS with "someone's kids," as Diane Ravitch noted in the late 1980s.
Who's profiting? It's not the kids. That's for sure.
This isn't just fiscal mismanagement, as Hinz notes. It's also political and educational malpractice under the disguise that it's "all for the kids."
Too bad the politicians, government and union workers, and CPS personnel--the Chicago Democratic Machine--can't be sued for what they've been doing, are doing, and will continue to do...to the kids.
Let the discussion begin...
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* - TOH to Second City for forwarding this item.