The Administration recommends that the Board of Education ratify and authorize the execution and performance of a contract by the School District of Philadelphia, through the Superintendent or his designee, subject to funding, as follows:
With: Accenture, LLP
Purpose: To perform an audit of the School District’s School Selection process, gather feedback from stakeholders, and provide recommendations for future years.
Start Date: 3/27/2023
End Date: 8/30/2023
Compensation Not to Exceed: $298,000
Locations: Administrative Offices
Renewal Options: No
Why is this contract needed?
The School District has a need for a comprehensive evaluation and analysis of documentation, project plans, and external communications to assess compliance with the existing school selection processes and to highlight opportunities for improvement. The review of processes will range from the administrative and financial to the operational or programmatic. Accenture LLP was chosen to provide this evaluation and gather stakeholder feedback, conduct data analysis, and provide recommendations for changes to the school selection process. This third party audit of the school selection process was requested in order to provide an objective, transparent assessment which will allow the District to develop an actionable plan for implementing any necessary improvements in future years.
In accordance with Policy 613, the District may utilize a cooperative purchasing agreement from the Pennsylvania Department of General Services (DGS) to satisfy the requirement to seek competitive bids for the purchase of goods and services. In August 2022, the Board had approved an action item pre-authorizing the District to enter into contracts with vendors providing services under the scope of certain cooperative purchasing agreements. DGS has a cooperative agreement with Accenture LLP for needs related to “...assistance documenting existing processes, identifying redundancies, inefficiencies, and other opportunities for improvement, and developing and executing actionable implementation plans.” On January 27, 2023, the District’s Office of Procurement (OPS) advertised a public Request for Information (RFI). Despite active and targeted outreach by OPS, no vendors responded to the RFI by the February 10, 2023 closing nor the extended February 17, 2023 end date. Subsequently, the District reached out to vendors who had previously provided evaluation services for the District or responded to prior District-issued solicitations for such services. Ultimately, Accenture LLP which is an approved vendor under a DGS cooperative purchasing agreement provided a scope of work. Accenture LLP had previously provided timely services for the District and has a working knowledge of the District.
The District then moved forward to engage Accenture LLP under the existing Board authority it believed it had through the August 2022 action item. After further consideration of that action item, however, it was determined that while the use of the DGS cooperative agreement as the procurement methodology was proper, the scope of the authority in that action item did not cover program evaluation services. Therefore, the District is seeking that authority via this action item to ratify the contract with Accenture LLP.
How is this work connected to the District’s plan to achieve Goals & Guardrails?
Goal 4 & 5: Every student graduates ready for college and career; Guardrail 1: Welcoming and Supportive Schools; Guardrail 3: Partnering with Parents/Family Members. The school selection process is intended to ensure families have access to the knowledge and opportunity to apply to schools outside of their catchment schools from grades K-12, so that they can make the right informed choice for their child. It is the goal of the District to prepare all of our students for college and career. This program evaluation will have the superintendent have a clear picture of what is working or not working towards this goal and within these guardrails; so that the District can improve on the process in a meaningful way.
How will the success of this contract be measured?
A public report will be generated for the superintendent, providing an evaluation overview of the District’s school selection process. This will include survey feedback from parents and students, as well as focus groups, interview feedback and actions for consideration.
Procurement Process (Bid Solicitation, Purchase Agreement, Sole Sources, Solicitation for Goods, Government Contract, etc..): Government Contracts
Request or Solicitation # (RFP or RFQ number): DGS Contract Number: 4400011176
Number of Proposers: 1
M/WBE Participation level (by %) Best Efforts
Charge Accounts (include fiscal year, charge account, and amount)
FY23: 110-1100-2023-9210-2126158-530001-000000-00000 $298,000