ERIC Number: ED413640
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
District of Columbia Public Schools: Student Enrollment Count Remains Vulnerable to Errors. Report to the Chairman, Subcommittee on the District of Columbia, Committee on Government Reform and Oversight. House of Representatives.
General Accounting Office, Washington, DC. Health, Education, and Human Services Div.
The District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) is one of the largest public school districts in the United States. Since 1989-90, there have been questions about several aspects of DCPS's enrollment-count process. A valid enrollment-count process and an accurate count are critical to DCPS's district- and school-level planning, staffing, funding, and resource allocation. This report examines the enrollment-count process that DCPS used in school year 1996-97 to determine whether the process appeared sufficient to produce an accurate count. The report also examines enrollment-count processes used by some other urban school systems. Data were derived from a review of documents, interviews, and site visits to 15 DCPS elementary and secondary schools. Even though DCPS changed parts of its enrollment-count process during school year 1996-97, the process remains flawed. The changes have overlooked larger systemic issues, such as the lack of internal control, problems in the areas of residency verification, and inadequate tracking of students through the pupil-accounting system. Other school districts reported that they use centralized enrollment and pupil accounting centers and a variety of automated student-information-system edits and procedures. Finally, DCPS is not in compliance with the requirements of the recently enacted District of Columbia School Reform Act of 1995. The report concludes with a list of matters for Congressional consideration and a list of recommendations for the DCPS superintendent. One figure is included. Appendices contain methodological notes; prior criticisms and audits; and comments from DCPS, District of Columbia Financial Responsibility and Management Assistance Authority, and the U.S. Department of Education. (LMI)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: General Accounting Office, Washington, DC. Health, Education, and Human Services Div.