State Auditor Tom Schweich announced today that he has activated the Auditor's Swift Assessment Program (ASAP) to investigate serious allegations within the St. Louis Public School District..
"My office has received specific information regarding attendance figures at the St. Louis Public School System which we believe to be credible," Auditor Schweich said. "At this time, pursuant to our ASAP protocol, we believe we need to preserve relevant evidence, and I have activated our rapid response program to do just that."
ASAP will review specific allegations that school attendance figures may have been falsified in order to receive state attendance per diems and appear to be in compliance with the No Child Left Behind Act.
This morning, Darrell Moore, chief litigation counsel and director of ASAP for the State Auditor's Office, served subpoenas to administrators at the St. Louis Public School District. The subpoenas served are to ensure the preservation of evidence and to compel testimony. The evidence and testimony gathered as a result of these subpoenas will be used determine whether records were altered and whether a more detailed audit of St. Louis Public Schools is warranted.
"I am hopeful for the full cooperation of the administration and employees of the St. Louis Public School District," Moore said. "Although these are just allegations, we will work to quickly determine the nature of any problem that may exist with the district's attendance records."
The State Auditor may activate ASAP when there is substantial, credible evidence to believe that there is:
(1) fraud, violations of state or federal law, rule or regulation, or significant misappropriation, mismanagement, or waste of public resources;
(2) significant risk of loss of confidence of the people in their government due to fiscal abuse or mismanagement;
(3) the need for immediate action to preserve relevant evidence and/or prevent continued harm.
Before activating ASAP, the state auditor determines whether allegations are credible, specific and coherent, and whether the allegations warrant immediate action. When appropriate, the state auditor will refer the allegation to the attorney general or other proper authorities.
Persons who would like to provide information regarding the St. Louis Public School District are encouraged to contact the state auditor's office at 800-347-8597 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Monday, May 02, 2011
Auditor investigating attendance fraud in St. Louis School District
The state auditor is looking into problems in the St. Louis Public School District. From the news release: