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Ohio Department of Education to Get Tough on Charter School Treasurers

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Monday, April 9, 2012 at 1:22 PM

After the release of state audits that found more than $500,000 in mismanaged state funds at two charter schools, the Ohio Department of Education says it plans to "get tough on charter-school treasurers with a history of fiscal mismanagement," the Columbus Dispatch reports.

Carl Shye was one of the treasurers faulted in the state audits. The Ohio Auditor of State says:

Since the latter half of 2011, Shye has been issued findings for recovery in five audits... All told, Shye has more than $650,000 in findings for recovery to his name.

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Those findings are related to charter schools in Columbus, Dayton and Youngstown.

In 2009, State Rep. Clayton Luckie (D, Dayton) called for the state to take away Shye's license:

“They need to take away his license,” Luckie said of Shye. “I have asked the department of education, professional licensure department, to look into his license. I have also contacted the (state) attorney general to look into whether any crimes have been committed.”

State agencies will neither confirm nor deny investigations, but stripping a treasurer’s license isn’t simply done, said Scott Blake, spokesman for the Ohio Department of Education.

Nearly three years later, the Ohio Department of Education moved to revoke Shye's treasurer's license. The State Board of Education is set to accept Shye's voluntary surrender of his license at the board's meeting tomorrow.

Now the Ohio Department of Education may look at revoking the licenses of other charter school treasurers too, the Dispatch says:

“Mr. Shye was the first. I think there are going to be more to follow,” said Lori Kelly, the director of the department’s office of professional conduct. She said her division, which investigates wrongdoing by licensed school employees, is actively looking at some treasurers, some of whom are likely to be disciplined.

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