DETROIT-Detroit Public Schools has contracted with United Parcel Service (UPS) to deliver standardized tests to its schools in May, a job previously carried out by district employees. School officials say if it works as well as they expect, the one-time contract could become permanent, and ensure that the Essential Skills Achievement Tests arrive on time.

The district struggles to adequately teach Detroit school children the basic skills they need to learn; it also has trouble delivering in a timely manner the tests aimed at monitoring academic progress.

The problems haven't been just on the delivery side of the equation, but also on the administrative side. Jack Crumpler, chief steward for the Teamsters Local 214, told the Detroit News that the district's drivers had been hampered because school administrators often fail to turn in work orders for test materials on time.