Purchasing Overview

Public purchasing differs distinctively from private sector purchasing. Private businesses can purchase from only one vendor and their choice may be made on the basis of price, convenience, or on personal considerations. In sharp contrast, Public entities must conduct all of their dealings in the public eye and must adhere to strict legal guidelines.

As a public entity, our District must make its purchases within relevant statutes and policies. Although bound by these constraints, the school District’s objective is to purchase the best products, materials, and services at the lowest practical prices.

The District’s Policies and Procedures, pertaining to Purchasing are derived from State Law. Statute and District Policy requirements outline how school districts procure goods and services, the types of competitive processes that must be used, and the exceptions to these requirements.

The Purchasing Office is the District’s centralized purchasing function that is responsible for purchasing all supplies, materials, and equipment, within the guidelines governing our District. Purchasing issues all formal bid requests, facilitates selection of vendors, and negotiates and establishes bids and other contract terms and conditions, delivery, and adjustments. Having a centralized purchasing function results in lower purchasing costs for the following reasons:

  • More items are bought in large quantities, which lowers the unit cost.
  • Fewer purchase are made, which lowers the cost of forms and time.
  • Increased oversight means that more vendor discounts can be taken.
  • Control over inventories greatly increases.

The Purchasing Office facilitates the adherence to applicable statute and policy requirements and application of efficient and effective procurement processes by:

  • Monitoring purchases from a district-wide perspective to ensure adherence to Statute and District Policy requirements.
  • Buying certain items in bulk and maintaining an inventory of materials, supplies, and equipment necessary for daily operations of the District.
  • Establishing bids and contracts to cover repetitive procurements of goods and services.
  • Processing purchase requests and issuing purchase orders to vendors in a timely manner.

Any questions related to these procedures can be directed to the RRISD Purchasing Office at ext. 6950.