• Disparity Study

  • Charleston County School District (“the District”)  has commissioned MillerConsulting, Inc. (MConsulting) to perform a disparity study of its Capital Building Program purchases and a disparity study of its General Operating Fund purchases.  The study will review and evaluate the procurement histories of the District to: 

    • Examine what, if any, barriers may be adversely affecting the participation of Minority Business Enterprises (MBEs) in procurements issued by the District; 
    • Identify the availability of MBEs that are ready, willing, and able to do business with the District in the relevant market areas, based on both business presence and headquarters; 
    • Analyze the procurement data of the District to determine its respective utilization of MBEs; 
    • Determine any statistically significant disparity between the availability and utilization of MBEs that are ready, willing, and able to do business with the District as part of their procurements; and underutilization of these MBEs. 

    The study will focus on MBEs in the procurement categories of Construction, Professional Services, and Supplies/Services from July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2020 (FY 2016-FY 2020). 

    Study schedule. MConsulting initiated the disparity study in August 2021 and will complete the study by the end of June 2022. 

    Key contacts. If you have any questions or comments regarding the 2021 Charleston County School District Disparity Study, please contact:

    Wayne Wilcher, CPPO, CPPB
    Director, Contracts and Procurement
    Charleston County School District
    (t)843-566-8131; (e) wayne_wilcher@charleston.k12.sc.us

     

    Alternatively, you can contact the project team directly at:
    Sherry Williams
    Project Manager & Director of Programs, Miller3 Consulting, Inc
    (t) (404) 793-7541; (e) swilliams@miller3group.com

    Study progress. The District will provide regular updates about M Consulting’s progress on the disparity study throughout its course. Please check back periodically for those updates.

    Project initiation. The District and M3 Consulting kicked off the 2021 Charleston County Schools Disparity Study in August 2021 with a series of virtual meetings with various district departments and representatives. M3 Consulting met with the District to introduce the study, answer questions, and begin the data collection process starting with assessing and understanding contracting and vendor data that the District maintains.

    Data collection. M3 Consulting began working with the District in August 2021 to collect data on contracts and procurements that the District awarded during the study period as well as information about the vendors that participated in that work.

    Next steps. MConsulting will engage in the tasks in the coming months:

    • Community engagement
      • One on One interviews- The project team will conduct a series of one-on-one interviews with both non-minority and minority business owners on their experiences doing business or attempting to do business with the District
      • Focus Groups- The project team will conduct a series of focus groups with both non-minority and minority business owners on specific topics related to their experiences doing business or attempting to do business with the District
      • Public Hearings-The project team will conduct a series of public hearings in various locations throughout the District, which will tentatively be held in 2022. During the public hearings, the project team will present information about the disparity study, answer any questions, and solicit participants for any verbal or written testimony that they would like to share about their experiences working in the marketplace. Further details including specific dates, times, and locations of the meetings will be available soon.
    • Data collection. M3 Consulting will continue to work with the District to collect data on contracts that it awarded during the study period and the vendors that participated in those contracts.
    • Data analysis. M3 Consulting will begin analyzing data that it collects from the District. M3 Consulting will begin assessing the subindustries that account for the majority of District contracting, the geographical area that is most relevant to the District's contracting, and the percentage of total contract dollars M/WBEs businesses received on District's prime contracts and subcontracts during the study period.
    • Capacity surveys. In the February of 2022, the project team will begin conducting capacity email and telephone surveys with businesses in the relevant geographic market area that perform work that is relevant to District contracting.  

    If we contact your business, please participate in the community engagement and survey process to help ensure an accurate and comprehensive survey process!