Jeannie Kaplan: How Denver Reformers Lost Nearly $1 Billion

Because so mAny hedge-fund managers and corporate chieftains are in the “reform” camp, we Ssume that they must know a lot about financial and managerial matters, even if they are clueless about education and learning.

Jeannie Kaplan, who served two terms on the Denver school board, says that assumption of financial prowess is wrong.

She writes in a comment on the blog:

“Denver has been the victim of both education and financial reform. I have been remiss in not writing about financial failures here because of the complexity of the issue.

“But the bottom line in Denver is in 2008 then superintendent Michael Bennet and current superintendent Tom Boasberg, borrowed $750 million in a risky variable rate swap deal to supposedly fill the unfunded liability in DPS’ pension.

“How has that worked out? UAAL has risen from $400 million to over $700 million and the pension debt has risen from $300 million to $950 million. Yes that’s right, close to one billion dollars.

“The two were somehow able to get the Colorado legislature to write off (they call it an offset) bank and legal payments with the end result being less actual money is being paid into the pension. A legal defunding. Amazing, no?”

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