Wico. School Superintendent Responds To Audit Report - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Wico. School Superintendent Responds To Audit Report

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WICOMICO CO., Md. - $162,000 spent on fast food and restaurants, tens of thousands on gift cards.

A new state audit seems to show inefficient spending by Wicomico County Public Schools. 

"Are the numbers accurate? Yes," says Superintendent John Fredericksen.

But according to him, the 30+ page report only skims the surface.

Issued by the Maryland office of legislative services, the audit shows more than $27,000 worth of gift cards bought between 2011 and 2013 with corporate credit cards.  It goes against state policy, but as it points out in the report, that rule doesn't apply to Wicomico County Public Schools.

Still, some wonder where's the money going?    

According to Fredericksen, "we do use a gift card as an incentive for a student.  We have specific procedures, so we know where the gift card went, and every one of those tied out perfectly."

Since the audit, changes have been made.  Passwords are more complex and being changed more often, and fewer employees have access.

The audit also makes other recommendations to save money, like changing bus routes.  The county already cut its bus fleet by five percent, and the superintendent argues saving money isn't always most important, saying "if you're running the cheapest system, you got to be very careful to make sure you're not saving dollars and increasing the risk in terms of safety,  and we take that very seriously."

Along with the reporting their findings, the state's audit also outlines a number of recommended changes, which the county doesn't have to adhere to, though the school board is taking many into consideration.

For the full report, CLICK HERE.

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