From Harford County Public Schools Superintendent Sean W. Bulson:
Dear Harford County Public Schools Employees,
In October 2018, I established five teams to explore opportunities and strategies that will lead to recommendations for the future of Harford County Public Schools.
One of these teams, the Outsourcing Team, has been charged to investigate cost effective methods to maintain the quality of service for the school system in the most efficient manner possible. Recently, staff involved with this team issued Request for Information (RFI) for Custodial Services, Food Services, Special Education Transportation Services, and Facilities Management Services. Please note that RFIs are a way for HCPS to engage the private sector and obtain data and information for evaluative purposes.
Understandably, there are concerns and rumors that recommendations from the Outsourcing Team will impact program and staffing decisions being made in the upcoming budget, which becomes effective July 1, 2019. Please know that is not correct. The research and consequent suggestions from the Outsourcing Team will not have any impact on decisions related to staffing, programs, and practices for this budget.
The conversation around business efficiencies demands thoughtful and deliberate study. It also requires dialogue with stakeholders prior to making a final determination on any potential action. The assessment of efficiencies and the discussions surrounding sustainable improvements will continue throughout the upcoming year. If, as the result of the findings, discussions, and evaluation, it is determined that HCPS should look at service delivery changes more seriously, HCPS will engage our employee base through the Association Leadership Council so as to gather input and continue to be as transparent and open as possible prior to making any decisions which ultimately impact our school community and employees.
Sean W. Bulson, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools
The Wonder Wondering Wonderer says
Seriously though, people aren’t stupid.
With the way things are going, everyone knows that someday it’ll be a contractor riding back and forth on a lawnmowe and not someone in a blue HCPS T-shirt.
larry P says
As it should be, paying a HCPS employee $50,000 a year and medical,dental, vision, retirement etc to mow the grass is moronic.
Custodians don’t make that much
larry P says
custodians don’t mow grass, if you have ever seen the grass mowing crews they drive new full size dump trucks hauling big brand new John Deere farm tractors with bat wing mowers.
call them like you post them says
Wrong. Yes they do. I invite you to come down to watch and learn. By the way, the school in my area that we will visit uses New Holland (blue not green).
larry P says
Custodians clean up puke, swab bathrooms and empty trash cans they are not required too have CDL licenses like those who mow the grass. Educate yourself ya big dummy
Larry, you should probably open another can of Budweiser and watch more re-runs of “Larry the Cable Guy.” rather than give your expert opinion on HCPS custodial salaries, dump trucks and John Deere tractors with CDLs.
Im not sure if you’re trolling or you just saw some HCPS Grounds Crew driving down the road and assumed a lot? Yeah.
Sorry…but they do cut the grass at each school. They drive a regular lawn tractor. Please educate yourself.
Jim in Hickory says
There was a custom tow rig hauling a 20′ trailer with a HCPS sticker on the door. On the trailer was 4 mowers. They were parked at Redners in Hickorys parking lot yesterday at 11:40. Four overweight men got out 3 went to Tamborinos 1 went to Redners. So the question would be if each school cuts their own grass what do these portly gentlemen do for a living at HCPS?
“Jim in Hickory”
Why don’t you ask them yourself?
What does it matter what they do for a living or that they are overweight? How is that relevant?
And why do you think anyone else cares about gawking and “reporting” Harford County government employees at lunch time?
Are you one of those “wasting our tax payer monies” types? Yeah.
Go troll somewhere else.
PARENTS OF STUDENTS OF HCPS. CURRENTLY, WE ARE IN THE 24TH PLACE IN THE STATE (LAST) FOR SPENDING PER STUDENT. I DID NOT REALIZE WE WERE IN A REBUILDING PROGRAM AS WE EDUCATE OUR YOUTH. THIS IS NOT ACCEPTABLE. CALL, WRITE, SPEAK TO THE COUNTY COUNCIL. WE SHOULD NOT TOLERATE THIS LACK OF INVESTMENT FOR EDUCATION.
If they issued a tax on capital letters, you could balance the budget.
If Barry Glassman had his way he’d outsource the entire school system. Red flag is flying people…without a high quality school system we won’t have a high quality County.
Forever Amber says
Some things should be outsourced IF they are cost-effective.
Grounds keeping and custodial services can be performed just as well by outside contractors as they can be performed by HCPS employees. If it’s cheaper to out-source, I say go ahead and out-source.
If out-sourced transportation services included the buses, maintenance, drivers, etc., (and we could sell our current supply of buses) maybe it would be more cost-effective, not just for special education but for all the students – AS LONG AS the students were not charged a fee for everyday use of this service. Special events are a different story.
Cafeterias – I don’t think so. I would be afraid a contractor would go the cheap route and supply pre-packaged foods with a shelf-life longer than the national debt. All those additives and preservatives are not good for growing children and other living things.
Teaching Staff – Definitely not. Since contractors can use anyone that meets “their” standards, you wouldn’t know who’s in front of the classroom.
Jim in Hickory says
WAWA in Hickory will close if they outsource facility management.
School busses are already owned/operated by contractors, the name of the contractor is below the driver’s side window. The only ones that aren’t are the “short busses.”
See for yourself, the “short busses” are all parked in various Harford County .gov shops/facilities you drive by everyday. Just turn your head and gawk. There they are.
Regular buses are outsourced
is not your job that is on jeopardy, why they don’t cut the Administrators and Supervisors income to keep
our staff and don’t have to outsourced any department .
Sam Adams says
I know a school bus contractor with 50 buses in his fleet with a W-2 in excess of $500k. He has always said the net profit to the contractor after all expenses (driver labor, fuel, maintenance, insurance, interest, etc.) is $10k per bus per year. It’s higher in the second half of the bus’ 12 year useful life after the 6 year bus loans are paid off. Route contracts are essentially guaranteed for life once awarded, making bus contracting a very lucrative and low risk business. In general, governments are horrible business negotiators and bus contractors are laughing all the way to the bank.
The Wonder Wondering Wonderer says
The risk is finding drivers. Figure a large portion of these drivers are semi retired folks.
Seems like a lot of “Driver’s wanted” posted around. Hell, even “Harford Transit” has that sign up.
larry P says
And the buses are not full but that’s not the contractors fault. If HCPS was doing their job they could get rid of 25% of the buses.
And students would spend significantly longer times on the bus. Parents don’t want their kids on looooong bus rides.
larry P says
What the heck does being on a long bus ride have to do with anything? I was talking to a mother last week in Harford county who’s kid rode the bus to McDonogh School. everyday 1 way was over an hour. The child did not appear to be suffering some life altering bus syndrome
Rob K says
Outsourcing for certain tasks (buses, lawn care, cleaning, etc.) should be investigated. It’s pretty much how most businesses work.
Obviously, administration and educators are critical to the school, so they should not be outsourced.
If HCPS wants to pursue this, they should invest in strong contract negotiators and administrators — it only works if you maintain strong oversight.
Wait What says
Lol. Strong oversight? That ain’t happening.
The biggest problem, or perhaps the biggest advantage of being employed at local.gov is …. for the most part you’ll never lose your job for things a private employer would not deal with.
Wait? Whuaaat? Huhhhhh?
That’s why a lot of people in leadership positions … who are terrible in all aspects of the job description … is simply because … they cannot just get released from employment from their local government job because a lot of people don’t like them/have a hard time working for them, aren’t very good, etc. etc.
They just transfer the trouble makers around when the time comes.
Ralph Kramden says
The number of students on a bus is determined by the number of students who are eligible to ride the bus. Many students are dropped off and picked up by their parents, some high school students drive to school, and others only take a bus in the morning as they stay after school for athletics or other activities. Since no one can determine when these students ride a bus, each bus must be ready to take these students to and from school.
If a parent would sign a waiver against their student riding a bus, then maybe you could get rid of some buses.
Some buses are not filled because these students live in more rural areas. If they were to ride on other buses to fill them up, it would take an inordinate amount of time for these students to get home.
Some people say to privatize the buses and have parents pay the bus contractors. That would be interesting since they are getting their transportation for nothing now.
capt Obvious says
Thanks for mansplaining that to us.
He’s not mansplaining. Some people on this threat need an education about school bus transportation – like larry P.
Arturro Nasney says
Just for yucks and giggles look into the environmental impact of the making of almond milk. While researching keep in mind that California has a pretty severe water quantity problem.
Jesus dude if you are down to shit posting random stuff on a dead local information page welcome to rock bottom.
Get a dog maybe it will help.