Compuware Corp. has signed an agreement with the Detroit Public Schools (DPS) to provide information technology services for the 167,000-student district. The deal is valued at about $15 million per year—an annual savings of about 15 percent over the district’s current technology expenditures, officials said.

The agreement may be the first such deal for a large urban school district, and it solidifies the principles set forth in a letter of intent from the school to Compuware in August. The agreement also provides for two, two-year extensions.

“This agreement with Compuware brings value-added expertise to the Detroit Public Schools as we continuously strive to become more effective and efficient,” said DPS Chief Executive Kenneth Stephen Burnley. “Providing all of our students with a top-quality education is the focus of our mission to transform the district. This new agreement allows us to concentrate more on education.”

Under the agreement, Compuware will provide information technology services that support the district’s educational mission in areas such as human resources, finance and budget operations, student information services, and special education. Compuware will assume a role in the continued development and management of the employees and applications that run the district’s web site and technology services operations.

As the partnership is implemented, Compuware expects to offer employment to information technology professionals already at DPS. “We’re excited to add such high-quality people to our team and to get to work on this project,” said Peter Karmanos Jr., Compuware chairman and chief executive officer. “We’ll deal with the technology and let the teachers, administrators, and students do what they do best—teach and learn.”

With fiscal 2000 revenues of more than $2 billion, Compuware provides software and professional services intended to optimize productivity and reduce costs across the application life cycle.