“Thorough & Efficient School System & the West Virginia School Building Authority”

The Free Press WV

An Economical, Thorough & Efficient School System & the West Virginia School Building Authority “Economy of Scale” Numbers.

The West Virginia School Building Authority (SBA) was created by the state legislature in 1989 to carry out a mandate of the “Recht Decision,” which found the state’s school financing system to be largely unconstitutional.

The SBA was created to sell bonds for educational facility financing and distribute the money to county school boards based on school construction and maintenance needs. Thus, school facility needs were to get equal attention in poor and rich counties.

The statute empowering the SBA set out seven goals to be used in judging county facility plans for funding, but the SBA consistently emphasized economies of scale over the other goals.

This was accomplished by arbitrarily interpreting economies of scale as required school sizes, and by weighting the economy of scale factor when evaluating projects.

Compared to existing school sizes in West Virginia, the required sizes were very large and resulted in widespread school closings, primarily in rural areas.

This report concludes that the so-called “economy of scale” numbers are actually arbitrary and uneconomical requirements for large-sized schools, requirements neither mandated nor supported by law, and that West Virginia should scrap them.

To reach this conclusion, the report examines research on true economies and diseconomies of scale and reviews the detrimental effects of large schools on poor children, of long travel times on student achievement and quality of life, and of consolidation on poor rural communities.

It considers the constitutional mandate that West Virginia’s school system be thorough and efficient and finds that SBA large-school requirements, disguised as economies of scale, purport with neither directive.

~~  Deirdre H. Purdy ~~

How can the full report for the SBA report be accessed?

The SBA has not done its job. Look at what happened in Gilmer County and the so called bi-county school.

The one in Lewis County is too large and the CGES is too small resembling the Goldilocks phenomenon.

Comment by Keep Diggin  on  04.02.2017

TO: Keep Diggin
The SBA is a failure.
The WV Board of Education is a failure.

The former Governor and Legislators are failures as well.

Here is the proof to back up these statements.

West Virginia is ranked 50th in USA education.

Comment by Kanawha Reader  on  04.02.2017

There should be an independent and thorough investigation of where Gilmer County’s school money went for expenses related to building new schools.

Start way back to Leading Creek and go through the other steps to end up with the new County school.

Throw in bid free contracts and waste due to mismanagement. The SBA would not come out clean and of course it would do finger pointing.

That is what bureaucrats do when they are free of accountability and they have guaranteed job security.

Comment by Just Askin  on  04.03.2017

Here is another way the WV School Building Authority is failing Gilmer County by refusing to provide proper oversight.

There could be ways to use available space at the new GCES more efficiently to avoid the necessity of sending students to other locations.

By failing to get involved the SBA is not contributing to solving the crowing problem to eliminate need to use hall ways at the new school for instruction space.

This is a disgrace after spending $14,000,000 of public money, and the complete story of waste, mismanagement, and abuse of authority during intervention and its aftermath would make a great story for the New York Times to print.

Comment by Roger Ames  on  04.03.2017

The money is NOT 14 MILLION.
Its a LOT closer to 18 MILLION! Roger.

Of course Gabe Devano will NOT give the local board that information.
It would show the zombies on the WVBOE for what they are, and expose Gabe-ee boy too?

And remember this.  The WVBOE hired Devano, they own Devano, and they pay him with GILMER COUNTY MONEY!  He’s their man.  Did someone say he is a Manchin cousin?

Comment by Its ALL WVBOE's fault Roger  on  04.04.2017

Financial information has been kept secret.That tells you something right there.

If we could get an accurate accounting of each penny spent leading up to the LCES and the GCES the total sum would exceed $20,000,000 and severe problems still exist.

What an example of the misuse of public money!!!!

Comment by Roger Roger  on  04.05.2017

What is being done about the slip at the GCES?

It is clearly from a contractor’s error the way the site was designed with water running down hill from the school building during rains to end up washing away the bank to cause the slip.

Who is going to pay for this botch and why isn’t the State demanding that a contractor pay for it?

Cozy relationships with contractors and instead of one of them having to pay, public money will be used for botch cover up?

Comment by Who Pays For The GCES Slip Botch?  on  04.05.2017

You say who pays for the slip botch?
Gilmer taxpayers naturally. 

Remember the quote….“I’m from the government and I’m here to help you.“  Compliments WVBE.

The instructions are ‘bend and grab’ Gilmer.
The State could give a good rats butt about you.

I.Stallion has signed off on everything and you own it baby.

Comment by Remember Gayle Manchin emergency overthrow?  on  04.05.2017
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