NEWS RELEASES 2017-18 :: MAY 3, 2018


The State Board of Education today approved a report to the General Assembly on the results of an independent operational review of the Department of Public Instruction that includes 18 specific recommendations to help the department better support educators and students at North Carolina’s school districts and charter schools.

Under legislation passed in 2017, the state superintendent initiated a third-party review of DPI’s organizational, functional, and business-process operations. Ernst and Young (EY) was selected to perform the work. EY spent several months at DPI and interviewed more than 100 DPI employees and 100 external stakeholders, including superintendents, principals and teachers.

The EY team condensed what they learned into 18 recommendations in its final report. The recommendations can be grouped into two broad themes for transforming the agency:

  • DPI can improve services to North Carolina public schools by reducing internal silos and by delivering a more consistent vision for how to support local schools and students

  • By improving internal business processes and consolidating information technology activities, DPI can focus resources on supporting schools, educators, and students

“I strongly believe implementing the recommendations in this third-party evaluation will significantly improve how this agency functions internally and how districts, schools, educators, and students are supported across the state,” said state Superintendent Mark Johnson. “With a strong commitment from leadership, these recommendations can be fully implemented.”

The SBE voted to accept EY’s operational review and to approve DPI’s report (pdf, 749kb) to the General Assembly. As a next step, the department will establish a transformation management office to develop an implementation plan with specific actions, detailed timeline, and milestones to use in leading change efforts in the agency. The board also voted Thursday to establish a special committee to oversee agency changes proceeding form the operational review.

To help ensure effective implementation of the EY recommendations, the SBE and the state superintendent have made two requests to the General Assembly:

  1. Delay of the $5.1 million management flexibility reduction scheduled to take effect on July 1. According to the report cover submitted by the agency, reductions of more than $5 million for next year will prevent the strategic implementation of thoughtful changes that will yield efficiencies over a multi-year period and improve DPI effectiveness on behalf of students.

  2. Inclusion of language in appropriations legislation this session permitting the department to restructure positions, operating budget, and related funding and fund-code structures on a recurring basis that may be necessary to implement the EY recommendations.

Supporting documentation for the operational review can be found here (pdf, 1.2mb).

About the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction:
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction provides leadership to 115 local public school districts and 160 charter schools serving over 1.5 million students in kindergarten through high school graduation. The agency is responsible for all aspects of the state's public school system and works under the direction of the North Carolina State Board of Education.

For more information:
NCDPI Communication and Information Division, 919.807.3450.