The Corner

Where Your Education Dollars Are Going

New York’s bid for “Race to the Top” funds has been derailed by the bureaucrats’ race for a comfortable place to park their bottoms. The New York Post reports:

The state failed to get a penny in education funds doled out by Washington this week after clueless bureaucrats were dopey enough to admit to the feds they would have blown more than $200,000 on expensive furniture for their offices.

They apparently thought designer chairs, desks and bookcases for themselves were more important than training teachers or turning around failing schools.

The bizarre equipment wish list was so outrageous that three of the five judges who reviewed New York’s “Race to the Top” application blasted it in written comments — focusing on 24 “executive chairs” that cost $550 each, or more than $13,000 total.

If you’re going to go high-end, may as well buy Aerons.

But if you think that this slap on the administrative wrist is going to stop the educrats from spending taxpayers’ money on high-dollar office furniture, think again: They are required to do so by law:

State education officials said they were hampered by Albany’s purchasing rules, which forced them to order supplies from a vendor named CorCraft — whose goods are made by New York prison inmates.

“It’s not a state Education Department decision — it’s a state procurement issue,” said Deputy Commissioner John King Jr. “We are mandated to purchase from CorCraft.”

Keep that in mind the next time you hear a pious “It’s For the Children!” appeal from your government schools.

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