DETROIT – The Detroit Public Schools Community District has regained control of its finances.
The Detroit Financial Review Commission (FRC) voted unanimously on Monday to immediately grant a waiver that releases both Detroit Public Schools (DPS) and Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD) from active state oversight.
The elected DPSCD School Board and its appointed superintendent manage the district along with DPS, which solely functions to manage the district’s legacy debt.
The commission no longer has final decision-making authority over the districts' budgets, collective bargaining agreements and contracts. DPSCD now has the ability to make budget changes without the commission’s approval.
“This is a monumental day for the state of Michigan,” said State Treasurer Rachael Eubanks, chairperson of the Detroit FRC. “Our largest school district has shown leadership in having three consecutive balanced budgets with minimal oversight of day-to-day operations. I congratulate Detroit residents, parents, families, students and district officials for this historic accomplishment.”
The Detroit FRC will meet monthly to ensure both school districts meet the conditions of a waiver. It will play no active role in day-to-day operations.
“Without question, this is one of the greatest accomplishments of this School Board and Administrative Team over the last four years. We met several financial requirements while enhancing student programming, increasing teacher pay, and shifting away from contracted services for greater full-time employment. When we look back at our turnaround and rebuilding work, this will be one of those concrete examples of strong leadership,” said Dr. Nikolai P. Vitti, Superintendent of DPSCD.
The districts will be required to submit monthly financial reports, adopted budgets and financial plans each year. If the districts continue to meet basic fiscal requirements, the commission will have limited oversight for the rest of its existence.
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