• Eight districts brought services back in-house.
  • Six were food service contracts and two were custodial service contracts. No district brought back transportation service.
  • Cost savings from bringing services back in-house are not available for all of these districts.

All contracts have an expiration date, and most contain termination clauses. Despite the best efforts of district officials and contractors, arrangements sometimes wind up being overly burdensome or costly. When this happens, districts have the option of taking on the service and directly hiring workers to provide it.

This year, eight districts brought services back in-house — six for food services and two for custodial services.

Cedar Springs Public Schools had a private food service manager and was not happy with the company's management fee. It expects to save $30,000 by bringing the service back in-house. Lakewood Public Schools went from a $20,000 deficit under its contractor to a projected $38,000 surplus by bringing food service in-house. Thornapple Kellogg Schools ended its contract and is sharing a food service director with a nearby district. Officials expect to save $40,000 from the move.

The board of education for Plymouth-Canton Community Schools ended its private contract for food service because it preferred to have direct oversight and management of its food service provider. Richmond Community Schools officials said they did not think that its food service contractor was adding value to the district.

Fairview Area Schools had used a contractor to provide custodial services, but opted to end its contract and hire its own employees. Forest Area Community Schools had only contracted for the cleaning of a single building and now requires its teachers to provide the service.

Detroit's spokesman did not indicate that the district had brought services back in-house, but it was stated that the district did not have a food service contractor. Follow-up calls for a response have not been returned.

Districts that brought services back in-house

Service

Cedar Springs Public Schools

Food

Detroit Public Schools

Food

Fairview Area Schools

Custodial

Forest Area Community Schools

Custodial

Lakewood Public Schools

Food

Thornapple-Kellogg Schools

Food

Plymouth-Canton Community Schools

Food

Richmond Community Schools

Food