Parent challenges decision to hire yet another consultant in school system

From a Concerned Parent:

Opinion… Warrington Middle Consultant
Malcolm, Malcolm, Malcolm, please tell me that the use of our tax payer funds, $375,000 in this case, is being reported as being spent on a consulting firm that is actually a single individual, who was apparently a successful teacher and principal, but has no identifiable consultant background or history, who has only been in the business as a consultant for just over two years… isn’t true! I looked up a few facts and listed them below, none of which sounded overly impressive or worthy in the consulting world, except perhaps Mr. Young’s Jacksonville home and all of this information was easily found.

Saving and/or improving Warrington Middle is certainly a great idea and surely supported by the majority of folks in Escambia County, but hiring an outside consultant to tell the School district, the Principal and the Teachers how to improve upon their overall performance grade and about the grading system at the school is ridiculous! I thought that was your job and their job as well? If you and they can’t get that done, then we might need to be searching for someone or something else and it’s not a consultant!

Here’s the answer Mr. Thomas… find a better administration and a better faculty at Warrington. One that is capably of administering the curriculum, teaching and motivating their students, motivating the student’s parents, and setting higher standards for everyone involved! We all know it’s a tough school, with lots of issues internally and externally, but we don’t need an outside consultant to tell us this, do we? How to fix these issues and problems is your job isn’t it, that’s what you’re being paid for out of tax payer dollars and if a consultant is your solution, it must be a last ditch effort and shame on you!

Mr. Young sounds like he had a very successful career as a teacher and principal. Why not just hire him as a principal, not as a consultant. Or perhaps spend that $375,000 on improving existing Escambia County teacher or principal salaries, providing incentives, combat pay or similar types of stipends to get the best Administration and faculty available, all with proven performance records… seems like a pretty straight forward fix Mr. Thomas. I’d bet that $375,000 could attract some very strong and motivated teachers, counselors and school administrators from right here in Escambia County!

Some final points about the hiring of this consultant… was there a request for proposal (RFP) sent out to qualified applicants, what specific criteria was used in evaluating the qualified consulting firms, how many firms were qualified and ultimately considered, who was on the committee to evaluate the proposals, and was the criteria and required information for these consultants provided in advance to the public for comments or suggestions? You are running a business, Mr. Thomas, except you are spending my tax payer dollars and being paid by those dollars to do your job, surely you have done your due diligence before you spent my tax payer dollars by following the standard business practices mentioned above…? The information below would suggest otherwise!

Just for the Record… Turnaround Solutions, Inc. has been around since June 2012 (, first recorded in 2012, but changed the name in 2013 and they did not exist prior to that. It has one Officer, Mr. James Young who is the President/CEO and the one and only staff/employee of the corporation actually named. However, they do have unnamed consultants that are all state certified? And according to their website, TS Corporation does have several Specialists positions available and several vacancies under each of those positions listed on the website. This appears to be a one man band!

The principal address of the business is in Mr. Young’s home located at 5419 Grand Cayman Road in Jacksonville according to the, 2014 annual report, but his website indicated that for contact information it is located 4600 Touchton Rd. E. Jacksonville, FL. The home on Grand Cayman Road appears to be a really nice 4/3 house on just under an acre, that is valued at over $700k. Not bad for a Duval County Teacher and Principal that started a new consulting business just two years ago! He was a principal through June 2012. The website references no actual consulting experience. Please tell us Mr. Thomas, that you’ve not committed $375,000 of our county funds to hire a one man consulting firm that works out of his home, with no consulting experience to save Warrington Middle… Please!

Turnaround Solutions, Inc. Services include; Common Core Services, College Tours, Lectures and Family Engagement Services and specific assistance in Math, Science, Reading, Writing and to develop plans to increase graduation rates to name just a few. That all sounds terrific, but also sounds like a lot of work for one man, who has been a teacher and a principal at several schools over a relatively short period of time and no current staff. Surely you’ve done your homework and research Mr. Thomas on this company beyond what I’ve found today and that all the information from, TS’s own website, and Google Maps is perhaps incorrect or incomplete…?

Myself and thousands of other interested Escambia County residents want to learn more about Mr. Young, his staff, Turnaround Solutions, the contract details, including the duration and the deliverables! Hopefully you can enlighten us all! Or perhaps you could just buy his book… “The One-Year Turnaround”, it’s only $23.99 and save the tax payers of Escambia County a ton of money!