A recent audit of 21 public high schools in the region shows that stolen textbooks and unnecessary book purchases have cost the Los Angeles Unified School District nearly $10 million.

The online report criticized the already cash-strapped school district for not “effectively, efficiently, or economically” managing the textbook inventory process. According to NBC Los Angeles, the audit discovered that many textbooks were not bar-coded and that poor communication between students and the school led to unnecessary textbook purchases.

District officials insisted that a new tracking system for schools will be available in another several months. According to reports, the school district spent more than $83 million on textbooks last year and was forced to postpone $60 million in purchases in 2010 because of budget cuts.

The report, conducted by the inspector general's office, covered a period from 2008 to February 2010.

In one case, auditors found half a million dollars worth of unused textbooks in a district warehouse.

-With reporting from City News Service. Got news? Email us. Follow us on Twitter, too: @dennisjromero.

LA Weekly