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Local charter school cited in financial audits

Imagine MASTer Academy was cited in four areas in recent financial audits, according to a report presented to the board Wednesday night.

The report, outlined by Imagine Schools Regional Business Manager Amy Williams, was a summary of findings from state and federal audits of the school's financial records. Williams said the school was cited once in its federal audit and received four citations from the state, but one item was a duplicate of the federal citation.

The school didn't have complete applications for some students participating in the free- and reduced-price lunch program, which is funded through the federal government. Applications didn't have verification from the school of students' eligibility, according to the report. Williams said the lunchroom manager is in charge of signing off on all applications and had failed to do so on some.

At the state level, the school was cited for not having a copy of documentation that shows the school's enrollment on count day, a day when schools are required to count the number of students so the state can distribute per-student tuition payments.

Another citation was for failing to have an inventory of the school's equipment in the event of a disaster. Williams said pricier items like computers are on a depreciation schedule, but items like furniture and textbooks are not included in that depreciation schedule. The school didn't have value attached to those items for the inventory.

The school is also required to deposit any money it receives by the next day. Imagine MASTer Academy was cited for having checks on hand that were older than one day. The school was also cited in the state audit for the same school lunch citation that was included in the federal audit.

The school is required to respond to each citation and resubmit the report by the end of next month. Williams asked the board for feedback and to review the report and the school's responses and make recommendations.

Board President Pat Sheean said in addition to the responses, the school should also include steps it has taken to fix any problems and what checks and balances have been put in place to ensure mistakes aren't repeated.

"As a board, we are responsible for fiscal performance," he said. "We need to make sure every 't' is crossed, especially when we're dealing with the government's money."


The board accepted the resignation of member Linda Passmore. In a letter read by Sheean, Passmore said she would be spending more time traveling for business and didn't think she could give the time required.

Passmore joined the board in 2010. Sheean hopes to have a new member approved at the board's February meeting to complete the seven-member board and said members should come to the next board meeting with recommendations.