CHARLESTON, W.Va. – West Virginia Board of Education President Wade Linger will seek an independent review of all board and West Virginia Department of Education existing contracts and agreements with vendors. Linger will discuss the proposal with board members on Wednesday during the monthly meeting.
“As the president of the West Virginia Board of Education, I intend to ask the board to approve an independent review of all of the existing contracts and agreements,” said Linger. “One of the goals of this independent review will be to confirm that the board and the Department of Education are meeting or exceeding the rules and regulations pertaining to the bidding and purchasing practices for state agencies.”
With board approval, Linger intends to ask the West Virginia State Bar to seek applications and recommend an attorney with no ties to state government or the Department of Education. It is expected that the independent examiner will have an understanding of state contracts, state bidding procedures, requests for information, requests for proposals and sole source contracts.
In addition to reviewing current agreements, the independent examiner will be tasked with evaluating practices and procedures in bidding and purchasing, and provide guidance to the state board for entering into future contracts.
“I believe that it is extremely important for county boards of education, county administrators, teachers, students, parents and taxpayers to have confidence that the West Virginia Board of Education and the Department of Education are following the rules and regulations put in place by our legislators,” added Linger. “I believe it is important to confirm that the bidding and purchasing practices are free from political pressure or individual interest.”
The contract review is estimated to take four months to complete.
“The governor’s education audit allowed us to recognize areas in which we are succeeding and areas that need improvement,” Linger said. “The board must lead and chart the path forward as we provide ideas, direction, inspiration and the supervision necessary to create a strong educational system for our students. The request for an independent review of contracts is an example of our hands-on approach.”
For more information, contact the WVDE Communication Office at 304-558-2699.