WHS Today

District under fire for overspending and discrimination

Davenport Community School District faces scrutiny for disproportionality and money mismanagement

School+Board+Directors+review+budget+reduction+and+sustainability+plans+at+the+Nov.+28+special+call+meeting.
Back to Article
Back to Article

District under fire for overspending and discrimination

School Board Directors review budget reduction and sustainability plans at the Nov. 28 special call meeting.

School Board Directors review budget reduction and sustainability plans at the Nov. 28 special call meeting.

Emma Bernick

School Board Directors review budget reduction and sustainability plans at the Nov. 28 special call meeting.

Emma Bernick

Emma Bernick

School Board Directors review budget reduction and sustainability plans at the Nov. 28 special call meeting.

Dani Reitz, Co-Managing Editor

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






State-issued audits, 83 positions to be cut, and over $13,000,000 in budget cuts. Due to violations made by the Davenport Community School District, all those listed are now inevitable. The district is under fire for mismanaging money and education violations, which include poor education management for over 2,000 special education students and an inequitable amount of suspensions for minority students. As a result, DCSD has officially moved into “Phase II” review from the Iowa Department of Education, and stands as the largest district to do so in Iowa’s history.

“So with our Phase II review, we are going to be interviewed at the end of January. It’s an audit, so we are going to work with them and if they find things we need to improve on, we’re going to improve them,” Interim Superintendent TJ Schneckloth said following last night’s school board meeting.

The school board unanimously voted to approve the two and five year budget reduction and sustainability plans, which entail cutting $13,793,000 from the district budget by fiscal year 2020 in order to compensate for overspending and mismanagement of the district’s budget.

Phase I involved disproportionality in special education, which reference the unproportional amount of minority students in special education and the likelihood of black students being suspended or expelled being much higher than white students. The Iowa Department of Education found DCSD to be in violation of seven areas last April. Citations were issued, the district was notified and provided with a set amount of time to fix said problems. 

Every student must have the best opportunities to succeed. These opportunities cannot be diminished because of our prejudices or biases, however they exist. We do appreciate the audit, as it has helped identify deficiencies in our system”

— School Board President Ralph Johanson

“Every student must have the best opportunities to succeed. These opportunities cannot be diminished because of our prejudices or biases, however they exist. We do appreciate the audit, as it has helped identify deficiencies in our system,” School Board President Ralph Johanson stated at the Oct. 8 board meeting.

Phase ll focuses more so on monetary and educational non compliances. There are two outcomes possible; the state will reinstate accreditation or the district will be granted conditional accreditation.

Despite being a rarity, conditional accreditation can bring serious problems. Colleges may not accept students from schools with conditional accreditation, which has resulted in adamant concern from many parents and various members of the Davenport community.

The open forum structure of the recent board meetings has given these individuals the opportunity to speak their minds.

΅I’m not in the ‘in’ crowd with the Quad Cities to where we have these open secrets to sit at people’s tables. I don’t have to be a part of that because I stand alone and I’m proud of that. So I’m not going to say I’m proud of any of you [the school board] because I’m not and I think you all are incompetent and should be ashamed of yourselves,” community member Evelyn Nelson said during the Nov. 29 board meeting.

Although these concerns have been made quite apparent to the school board, Schneckloth assures the community that the district is working diligently to find solutions to these problems.

“I have never been more honored to serve this district because of all this turmoil we’re in, the students, teachers, faculty members, and administrators are going to lock arms, hunker down, and come out of this better,” Schneckloth said.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






About the Contributors
Dani Reitz, Co-Managing Editor

Dani Reitz is a senior and voice editor for the Beak ’n’ Eye. As one who is fascinated by literature and language, journalism is a perfect fit for...

Emma Bernick, Media Editor

Emma Bernick is a senior and is the Media Editor for WHSToday. She loves being able to share her ideas and thoughts through student journalism. She enjoys...

Navigate Left
  • District under fire for overspending and discrimination

    News

    German Club offers immersive opportunities for students

  • District under fire for overspending and discrimination

    News

    Band department hosts trivia fundraiser

  • District under fire for overspending and discrimination

    News

    Formulating fall festivities

  • District under fire for overspending and discrimination

    News

    Davenport schools host German exchange students

  • District under fire for overspending and discrimination

    News

    Painting fundraiser saves outdoor classroom

Navigate Right

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






The student news site of Davenport West High School
District under fire for overspending and discrimination