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Madison Elementary School District


Madison ESD has many academic accomplishments, and its student achievement is higher than comparable districts’, but it could operate more efficiently. Some of the District’s noninstructional costs were much higher than comparable districts because of higher staffing levels and some inefficiencies. The District’s administrative costs were 20 percent higher than comparable districts’, primarily because it employed more high-level administrators and support staff, mostly in its central business office. Further, the District did not maintain adequate controls over facility rentals, resulting in lost revenues, and did not maintain adequate controls over its accounting system, exposing the District to increased risk of errors, misuse of sensitive information, and fraud. Despite operating efficient bus routes, the District had higher student transportation costs than comparable districts because it paid its bus drivers and bus aides for up to 2½ hours of nonproductive time per day. This contributed to the District’s spending $153,000 more on its transportation program than it received in state aid. The District also did not establish procedures to ensure drivers had current certifications, resulting in many drivers lacking current drug screenings, physical tests, and refresher trainings. Madison ESD’s plant operations costs were 34 percent higher per pupil than comparable districts’ because it operated its schools at only 73 percent of their capacity, on average, leaving it with more square footage per student than all of the comparable districts. Further, despite the low building utilization, the District began leasing building space for an additional school in fiscal year 2009 at an annual cost of $525,000. Although the District spent a lower percentage of its operating dollars in the classroom, it spent $142 more per pupil in the classroom than the comparable districts’ average because it had more resources available.  

Follow-Up Report

Additional Documents

Additional Documents