Thursday, April 28, 2016
Saturday, April 23, 2016
Now these troubled Gulen schools in Oklahoma are under state investigation
for once again double billing American tax payers on their lease buildings
Their audit proved they overbilled Americans by about $3 million dollars.
State audit questions charter schools' site lease paymentshttp://newsok.com/article/5485472
The foundation that operates Dove Charter Schools in Oklahoma City and Tulsa has billed the public millions of dollars more in lease payments for its school buildings than the foundation has paid to rent and purchase the buildings, according to a state audit released Wednesday.
The Sky Foundation, which manages Dove Charter Schools, has collected about $3.182 million more in lease payments for use of the Dove Science Academy-OKC school site than it paid to originally purchase the property, auditors said.
“We could find no legitimate purpose for the continued charging of lease payments above and beyond the purchase price of the facility,” auditors said. Over a two year period — from July 1, 2012, through June 30, 2014 — the foundation also collected $1,192,442 more in public fund lease payments from the Dove Charter Schools than the foundation paid to lease those other schools, auditors found.
“This has been going on for a long time. We just looked at a couple of years,” state Auditor Gary Jones said.
The Sky Foundation manages the Dove schools, which include Dove Science Academy-OKC, Dove Science Elementary-OKC, Discovery School of Tulsa and Dove Science Academy-Tulsa.
Officials with Dove Charter Schools did not return voicemail messages Wednesday afternoon seeking comment.
School foundations normally are created to provide private financial assistance to schools, but the Sky Foundation didn't operate that way, auditors said.
“We did not find any evidence of Sky soliciting funds on behalf of the schools or donating funds to the schools,” auditors said. “It appears the schools were supporting Sky instead of Sky supporting the schools.”
Auditors said the limited scope of the audit didn't allow them to track where all of the excess money from lease payments went but indicated some of the money may have been spent inappropriately.
The Sky Foundation made $175,000 in payments to Harmony Public Schools, a Houston charter school system, to sponsor a science fair competition open to high school students worldwide, auditors said.
“No Dove Charter School students attended,” auditors said. “This was not a legitimate school purpose, an apparent violation of both the school's charter and ... the Oklahoma Constitution.”
Although it occurred outside the time period being audited, state auditors also noted that the Sky Foundation bought the Raindrop Turkish House at 4444 N Classen Blvd. in Oklahoma City for $780,000 in May 2008 and sold it a little more than two years later for $1,025,000, realizing a profit of $245,000.
“We believe the funds used to purchase this building and the profit received in the sale of the building should be satisfactorily accounted for,” auditors said, suggesting the need for a follow-up audit.
Dove Academy audit should give OKCPS pause