DAYTON — Sixteen teachers and staff of New City charter school are wondering how their medical bills will be paid after learning Friday their health insurance had been dropped because the school had failed to pay the premiums.
In a May 15 letter to staffers that accompanied their paychecks, school administrators blamed the cancellation on school Treasurer Carl W. Shye, who also oversees the books for two other fiscally troubled charter schools in Dayton.
“Mr. Shye, the school treasurer, failed to send in the payment in a timely manner,” the letter provided to the Dayton Daily News said.
Contacted Monday, Shye said, “I have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about,” and that he would call back. He did not.
New City board Chairman Scott Nekrosius said he assumed bills were being paid and he was “surprised” Friday when he learned of the cancellation.
“We’re going to solve this problem as best we can,” he said.
The letter confirmed suspicions of teacher Kyle Muntzinger, who said his health insurance company has rejected more than $69,000 in claims this year related to the birth and health problems of his infant son. He said it’s the second time this school year his health insurance has lapsed at New City, a charter school for 130 students in grades kindergarten through eight.
“This is just an add-on to a miserable year of trying to catch up and fix problems,” Muntzinger said, adding that three of his paychecks have bounced this year, too.
New City Superintendent Robert Burns said the health policy lapsed May 7, while Muntzinger said his research shows it lapsed Feb. 28.
The canceled insurance policy is one of several fiscal problems for New City School, 1516 Salem Ave.
School leaders say the school is on the mend financially, but the most recent state audit available paints a dire picture of the balance sheet and books managed by Shye Jr., a Columbus-area accountant who is also treasurer for Arise Academy and Nu Bethel Center of Excellence.
According to Ohio Auditor Mary Taylor’s audit of New City’s 2007 school year, the school was $202,319 in debt, didn’t have documentation for $30,146 in disbursements and it didn’t have the chief executive’s approval for $217,506 in expenditures. It didn’t reconcile bank statements monthly or properly document “several deposits,” nor did it have a capital assets list or provide proof it carried insurance with the Ohio Bureau of Workers Compensation.
The bureau said Monday it couldn’t find evidence that New City carries the BWC insurance.
Nekrosius said the school has improved since that audit.
“We’re holding our own,” he said. “We’ll come out even at the end of the year.”
The Dayton Daily News has reported similar troubles at Arise Academy, a dropout/recovery high school at 1 Elizabeth Place, and Nu Bethel school at 3560 W. Siebenthaler Ave.
Shye said then that he made some mistakes, but he attributed most of the problems to state funding issues, school administrators and computer problems.
"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
How Would Duncan Provide Oversight for a Charter School Treasurer Like Carl Shye?
Obama/Duncan can't get enough of those charter schools, where entrepreneurial spirit and bold action must never be mistaken for slimeball corruption and recklessness. Right? The story of one treasurer and three charter schools in Dayton, Ohio--from the Dayton Daily News: