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Waxahachie ISD inflated attendance figures, TEA orders district to pay back funds

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The Ellis County Press

WAXAHACHIE - Waxa-hachie ISD was found to have inflated the average daily attendance figures used to collect state aid, according to a Texas Education Agency audit.

TEA’s financial audit division found the errors in a demand for total repayment of $107,699, according to statistics recently released in a 2007 report from the Legislative Budget Board, a state body that conducts performance reviews on school districts.

The TEA audit also included information from as early as 2006, when WISD was ordered to repay the TEA $43,808.

The following year, auditors told WISD to pay $63,891 for the inflated attendance records.

The 2003 fixed assets records showed the district had more than $17 million of capital and controlled assets, but an inventory conducted in the same year found $3.2 million of these assets were missing.

From January to May 2004, according to the report, the district researched the missing items and located $900,000 of the assets and determined $2.1 million of the assets had been disposed of, and more than $114,000 of the assets were still missing.

In 2002 and 2003, The Ellis County Press utilized reams of public documents and helped uncover financial mismanagement in the WISD that ultimately resulted in the resignations and retirements of the business finance director (Bobby Parker and Dan Davis), two school trustees losing re-election races (David Walker, Linda Alvarez) and a tampering with government charges on former WISD maintenance employees who released the public documents.

They later alleged Davis of possibly overbilling NASA during the Columbia space shuttle disaster in 2003, when debris landed on district-owned property and buildings.

In addition, school board trustees met at 8 a.m. on Saturday mornings to discuss financial problems with the district, a move critics said was an attempt to cover up problems.

Then-school board president Marylou Patterson, after the ECP reported on various financial issues, resigned and moved to Montana.

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Nelson Propane

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