San Diego Unified FAILS Transparency 101 – Turns Out They’ve Reported CARESAct Spending Twice Without Sharing With the Public

For months and months, parents, the public and the media have asked you, San Diego Unified (SDUSD), how you are spending the CaresAct Money received to prepare our schools and mitigate learning loss. Our concerns are valid. We heard you say it was used to shore up the budget deficit. We heard you tell us about varying amounts of aid. We heard you say the district has already spent $45 Million… But you know what we didn’t hear?

We didn’t hear that there is ONE SIMPLE REPORT that SDUSD has filed with the State of California not Once, But TWICE that would clear up all this confusion.

We will summarize the Q1 (3/1-6/30) details: $67.1M allocated. $7.2M spent in three areas: $5.5M – Distance Learning, $1.3M – Redirecting Personnel, $400k – Admin

The categories of PPE and Public Health (plexiglass & cleaning supplies) were notably $0.

REOPEN SDUSD DEMANDS SDUSD RELEASE THE 1ST QUARTER AND 2ND QUARTER CORONAVIRUS RELIEF FUND REPORT.

Why is SDUSD keeping this report hidden from the public? Why aren’t the SDUSD Board Members holding district leadership accountable? Can Superintendent Marten and Trustees Barrera and Evans honestly tell us they did not know this report existed when press conference after press conference they just deflected questions about CaresAct spending? SDUSD reported this information to the state 9/11 and 10/1.

What is SDUSD doing with our taxpayer money?

WE WANT ANSWERS NOW!

WE WANT ACCOUNTABILITY NOW!

WE WANT A NEW SCHOOL BOARD NOW!

We have written to the CA Department of Finance asking them to please send us SDUSD’s Q2 submission, but it would sure save us a lot of time if the district would just release it. 

Let’s talk about some key items we’d like you to share from the report, which we learned of directly from the State’s instruction manual. 

To begin: Page 17 describes the Print to PDF Option for the CRF Report. We would like SDUSD to print this report and publish it on its website for public access.

Total Interest Earned on CRF – We want to know how much money you’re making off the $67Million that you aren’t spending on helping our children.

Total Estimated Pandemic Response Costs – You keep saying you need more money so we’d like to know what you’re basing that on. 

Expenditure Category Documentation – We would like a list of the invoices that each category total is derived from.

Expenditures versus Obligations – Please review your submission for Q1. SDUSD is the only district to have identical numbers in both the obligations and expenses columns. It’s odd that they would be so perfectly split. The result is a total that is double. The instructions say: Funds included in expenditures should not be included as an obligation (or it will be double counted). We’d like to be sure that isn’t what is happening because the way we see it, it looks like you might accidently be reporting twice as much as SDUSD is actually spending. 

Thank you for attending our class in Transparency 101.

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