T HE PHILADELPHIA School District weighed in Wednesday on the flap over whether the firm making major recommendations on the future of public education in Philadelphia is violating a new city lobbying law, insisting that the Boston Consulting Group is not lobbying because the district is directing its work.

"The district was the only entity involved in defining the scope of work done under the contract, and the district is and will continue to be the only entity that decides which recommendations and best practices identified by BCG will be implemented in our schools," the district said.

The controversy arose because the consultants - who are recommending the closure of some schools and increased private management - are paid though more than $1 million raised by the William Penn Foundation.

Education activists and the Philadelphia NAACP filed a complaint Wednesday with the city Ethics Board, saying the arrangement is subject to public lobbying disclosure under a new law that took effect in January. Boston Consulting and the William Penn Foundation dispute the allegation.

-Will Bunch