Audit says Ray USD operating efficiently, needs stricter oversight

By Chase Kamp Copper Area News

The findings of an audit of Ray Unified School District, compiled in Aug. 2012 by Arizona state school auditors, show efficiencies in food services, transportation and plant operations, as well as AIMS test scores mostly in line with similar districts.

However, the audit pointed to a need for more stringent drug testing in the transportation department, increased computer network security and more oversight of school building keys.

The audit, released on Aug. 29, said many of the red flags stemmed from several incidents caused by a former employee that admitted to falsifying bus driver drug tests and selling surplus school property for personal financial gain.

The employee, who later resigned, was the sole supervisor of the school’s in-house bus driver drug test sample collection. The samples were collected by the employee at the district and were later sent off to an independent lab for examination.

Auditors found five falsified drug test samples over the last three years in which the employee changed the names on the samples or changed the list of specific drugs for which to test the sample. The employee admitted to changing only two of the samples.

The same employee was also in charge of overseeing the purchase and installation of a new energy management system. The employee obtained the old system from the vendor that was installing the new one without notifying the district.

The employee removed working parts from the old system and pocketed the money received from selling the parts online and elsewhere, totaling about $4,000.

The employee also admitted to a prior incident of removing and selling copper from district buildings that were being renovated, which came to around $3,000.

The audit also recommended greater computer security measures and more policies regulating the copying, distribution and return of school building keys.

In a letter addressed to the state auditor general, Ray Superintendent Dr. Robert Dunn explained the district’s plan to address every issue pointed out in the audit.

Dunn said a more elaborate random drug testing procedure will be implemented annually for bus drivers, including having samples opened at the district office by two individuals not from the transportation department.

Speaking with Copper Area News, Dunn said the district has already addressed nine of the 16 areas needing corrective action, with work currently being done on drafting new building key and network security policies.

The district will meet with state officials in Feb. to ensure compliance, Dunn said, but he plans to have every issue met by Christmas. “At this point, it’s certainly our plan to have everything taken care of by then,” Dunn said.

In regard to academics, the audit showed Ray USD AIMS test scores were similar to those of peer districts in the reading and math portions, with slightly lower results in writing. Ray’s graduation rate of 89 percent was found to be higher than the 80 percent peer district average and the 78 percent state average.

Ray USD spent a similar amount per student in the classroom compared to peer district, but spent an average of $895 less per pupil due to efficiencies in energy use, transportation and maintenance.

To comment on this article and others  visit the Copper Area News Facebook or send us an email at

Leave a Reply

  • Latest News

    Pastor’s Corner: Celebrating the Sacrifice of Jesus Christ

    April 15th, 2014

    In John 19:28-30 we read these words:  “Knowing that all was now completed and so that the Scripture would be fulfilled,

    Cross country runner makes stop in Superior to help veterans

    April 15th, 2014

    Anna Judd, a 29-year-old resident of Orange County, has set out on a mission to run across America to raise money and awareness for veterans.

    Superior Little League parade is Monday

    April 15th, 2014

    The Superior Little League will kick off its 2014 Major and Minor Baseball and Softball League seasons with the annual Little League Parade on Monday, April 21.

    Superior Public Library celebrates National Library Week: Lives Change @ Your Library

    April 15th, 2014

    Libraries and librarians have a powerful and positive impact on the lives of Americans on a daily basis.

  • More Stories

    Villalobos, 26 of Superior, and three others charged with attempted first degree murder

    November 25th, 2013

    Florence– On Friday, November 15, Robert Villalobos, 26 of Superior, AZ, was arraigned and plead not guilty to eight felony […]

    Kitt Peak Visitor Center Launches Five Major New Public Programs

    November 8th, 2013

    For Immediate Release: Tucson, Arizona. November 1, 2013. Visitors to Southern Arizona and residents alike can now enjoy  five (5) […]

    Florence Copper to Replace a Point of Compliance Monitoring Well

    November 7th, 2013

    Florence– Florence Copper Inc. is replacing one of the 31 existing Point of Compliance (“POC”) ambient water quality monitoring wells […]

    I-10 West closed near Picacho Peak for multiple crashes

    October 29th, 2013

    Phoenix– Westbound Interstate 10 is closed this afternoon following multiple crashes in the Picacho Peak area, according to the Arizona […]

  • Facebook

  • [Advertisement.]
  • Arizona Headlines & Current Weather

  • Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin