Friday, June 18, 2010

Elementary Math

Posted By on 06.18.10 at 10:35 AM

Sun-Times editorial, Chicago teachers must give up 4% wage hike, 6/16:

[Huberman] already has cut some areas demanded by the public, including nearly 1,000 central office staff

Chicago Tribune editorial, The 4 percent solution, 6/17:

The teachers aren't alone in shouldering the burden of balancing the budget. Huberman says he has cut nearly 1,000 jobs from the central office since 2009.

Ben Joravsky, What Cuts Did Huberman Actually Make?, 6/16:

As of May 1, 2010, CPS had 1,334 employees on its central office payroll, down from the 1,617 it had on February 1, 2009, when Huberman took charge.

That's a cut of 283 central office employees. Not bad, but far short of 1,000.

But wait—we're not done. You also have to consider the raises that most of the high-ranking employees received under Huberman's tenure. For instance, Huberman started at $230,000—up from the $212,502 his predecessor, Arne Duncan, had been making when he left to become U.S. Secretary of Education.

And don't forget the increases in unspecified central office "contractual services," covering everything from "telephone and telegraph" to "repair contracts." In this year's budget, the board of education increased its allowance for "non professional services" to $243,000 from about $91,000. The budget for "seminars, fees, subscriptions and professional memberships" went up to $120,000 from $45,000. Travel expenses rose to $80,000 from $30,000 and "miscellaneous contingent projects" to $83,000 from $31,000. And so on.

When you factor it all in, it's hard to say how much money—if any—Huberman's actually cut from the central office.

Steve Rhodes, 6/16 and 6/17:

You have to wonder if reporters at the dailies pay attention to their ostensible colleagues elsewhere such as John Conroy and Ben Joravsky. All indications are that they do not.

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