We have enough to do to focus on the central core of teaching and learning. Wherever we can privatize and get good accountable results, we should do it. It's the way to go for the 21st Century.
—Dr. Richard Holzman, Superintendent
Lindenhurst Public Schools, Lindenhurst, New York
As schools are being asked to take on greater responsibilities for the education of children, the challenge will become how best to marshall existing resources to make every dollar go further. Saving money without compromising services ought to be a chief concern of administrators in the 1990s. Contracting for services is a practical solution that can help administrators make the most of limited resources.
Although introducing competition into a system that has long been protected from such challenges is not easy, the rewards are usually well worth the effort. Cost savings from competitive contracting have been well documented. In addition, the contract itself enhances account-ability by tying performance directly to compensation. Providers who fail to deliver will not have their contracts renewed. Providers who succeed in serving schools and students will see their businesses grow.
Properly designed and monitored, contracts between the public schools and private providers can help school administrators do more with less. For administrators looking to provide their students with the best education possible, that's the bottom line.