Education A National Roundup

Miami-Dade School Board Dismisses Inspector General

By Karla Scoon Reid — August 30, 2005 1 min read

The Miami-Dade County, Fla., school board has refused to renew the contract of the district’s first inspector general, citing concerns over his accountability and productivity.

The board hired Herbert Cousins, a former FBI agent, in 2003 to probe allegations of fraud, waste, abuse, and misconduct in the 360,000-student district. Mr. Cousins reported directly to the inspector general of the Florida Department of Education, but his two-year, $1.4 million budget came from the district.

The board voted 8-1 this month not to extend Mr. Cousins’ contract, which ends Aug. 31. The board will consider options for restructuring the office.

Joseph Garcia, a district spokesman, said board members and Superintendent Rudolph F. Crew questioned why the inspector general did not report to someone in the district.

Mr. Cousins said he believes the office is being eliminated because it was uncovering “major issues” in the district.