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Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Troubled IDEA charter chain coming to Jacksonville in even more trouble

 Some of the post may seem familiar as I wrote most of it last year. I am just going to update it every time a new IDEA scandal hits the news.

IDEA Public Schools CEO JoAnn Gama and Chief Operating Officer Irma Munoz have been fired after a forensic review found “substantial evidence” that top leaders misused money and staff at the state’s largest charter school network for personal gain, the organization’s board president announced Tuesday.  

Jacksonville needs another charter school like the average person needs another hole in their head and I think most people would agree. That however isn't going to stop DCPS from approving a massive expansion at their next board meeting. Here is the thing, the state despite the Florida constitution saying the school board is the final say doesn't give them a lot of leeway, but that being said wouldn't you like a little fight out of the board?


The IDEA charter school wants to open, and this is just a start, three new charter schools. You may have heard about them in the media and none of it is good.

From the Washington Post

A U.S. congressman is demanding answers from the U.S. Education Department, alleging department employees complained to his office about political interference in the awarding of a multi million-dollar federal grant to the controversial IDEA charter school network.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/education/2020/04/27/idea-charter-schools-landed-grants-with-political-help-education-department-congressman-says/


From the Houston Chronicle

Several weeks after IDEA Public Schools nixed plans to spend millions of dollars on a charter jet lease, the charter network’s leader announced the end of additional “hard to defend” spending practices Thursday...

https://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/education/article/After-jet-backlash-IDEA-charter-schools-curbing-15017880.php

From ASUMAG

IDEA Public Schools, with nearly 50 schools and 51,000 students in Texas, has been criticized for spending $400,000 on basketball tickets and seeking to spend millions on a private jet lease.

https://www.asumag.com/facilities-management/business-finance/article/21121935/leader-of-charter-school-network-vows-to-end-questionable-spending