Comptroller Scott Stringer announced that the DOE can't account for $347 million it spent to wire middle schools for high speed internet. Stringer also said that a survey of teachers and principals showed that large numbers were not satisfied with their internet service at school.
This is from a Daily News piece:
The city Education Department has no record of how it spent $347 million earmarked to upgrade internet service at middle schools, an audit showed Sunday.
The department began to update its broadband technology by installing fiber optic cables and other components in all of its 503 middle schools in 2007.
The project was completed last year, but there are no documents showing how much it actually cost, project plans or progress reports, according to city Controller Scott Stringer.
In addition, many educators are frustrated by the service, according to a user-satisfaction survey Stringer’s office conducted.
All told, 33% of the 440 middle school principals and staff who responded said they were not satisfied with the internet service, 45% said the speed did not meet their instructional needs, and 25% said the service was inadequate.
“If we’re going to be the greatest city in the world in this century and the next, we have to prepare our kids for the future,” Stringer said.
“It’s pretty hard to engage a child when the video takes five minutes to load,” he added. “It’s not easy to spread joy and promote the love of learning if a child is at a laptop watching the spinning wheel of death for an extended period.”
The Department of Education comment on this story is a classic:
In response to the survey, department officials argued there was no need to improve the internet service.
They said “school-based respondents were confused by the phrasing of the auditors’ User Satisfaction Survey question about bandwidth upgrades.”
DOE wastes a fortune; educators are unhappy and the DOE replies that nothing is wrong.
OK so this story is really a "dog bites man" piece that Harris Lirtzman sent me.
Is anyone in the least bit surprised by the DOE wasting money or people in the schools being unhappy with their internet service?
Do any of our readers have any stories of wasted money or slow internet?