"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, September 08, 2022

Tough Questions Remain After $2.2 Million Stolen by KIPP DC Technology Director, Part 2

According to KIPP DC's top-heavy bureaucracy, unnamed individuals found out the $2.2 million was missing from their $140+ million pot "during a routine review" in December 2021.  As noted in Part 1, this came 20 months after KIPP began writing a steady stream of checks for thousands of tablets, laptops, software, and services that were never delivered, or even ordered. One month later, the ringleader of this scam, Kevin Ward, committed suicide. 

Now the question arises: did any KIPP employee contact Mr. Ward about the imbalance in the technology ledger prior to his suicide in January 2022? Another question Mr. Ward can no longer answer: did any employee of KIPP, besides himself, financially benefit from his thievery from the public purse? And finally, what kind of accounting system allows $2.2 million to be spent with nothing to show for it for more than a year and a half?

According to an anonymous KIPP DC spokesperson, the system had enough tech resources to make sure that students had the epuipment they needed soon after the Covid lockdown began in early 2020:

A KIPP DC spokesperson said despite never receiving technology from Ward’s fraudulent orders, students learning from home during the pandemic used devices purchased from other vendors. Within the first few weeks of the pandemic, middle and high school students received devices that had already been in KIPP DC’s inventory.

So this introduces another question: if KIPP DC inventory was sufficient to satisfy tech needs during Covid virtual school period, why did KIPP DC approve the orders for thousands more tablets and laptops?? Who approved these expenditures??

Will the Washington Post or even a DC local TV station ever ask all these questions?  Don't hold your breath.

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