JUSTICE DELAYED is JUSTICE DENIED to the Children of Hempstead Public Schools

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On behalf of the suffering Hempstead students who are in position to endure through yet ANOTHER school year in a District riddled with DECADES of corruption including PROVEN bribery, extortion, cronyism, nepotism,  patronage, influence peddling, and embezzlement; NYS Assemblywoman Taylor Darling and Senator Kevin Thomas passed legislation (A08403 same as S06559). 

It passed UNANIMOUSLY in the Assembly and passed in the Senate to bring three monitors into the Hempstead School District. These monitors will provide the needed oversight into the academic and financial operations of the district; ensuring that allotted resources go to the students and not to administrators and vendors. School begins in September and the bill needs Governor Cuomo's signature.

We the undersigned call on Gov. Cuomo to sign this bill immediately. Our children cannot wait any longer and they need your help!

To put this in perspective, Newsday reported:

'A fire was deliberately set at a shuttered Hempstead school building where records are stored, authorities said...It caused damage to the former School... The school district stores boxes of records from previous years at the vacant building, and the fire caused some concern from a school board member.

Melissa Figueroa, elected to the board last year, said she’s concerned about the timing of the fire. The board last week put a notice in the paper to solicit companies interested in doing a forensic audit of district expenses over the years, she said.

“I’m really beside myself,” Figueroa said. “I have been asking about safeguarding the documents that are in the building, including at the last board meeting last Thursday.”

She said she went to the scene and picked up papers that had been flying around — copies of checks and private and student information." By Ellen Yan, NEWSDAY  January 27, 2017

Without this signature, the students of Hempstead Schools continue suffering while a recent Forensic Audit found 295 payroll distributions to 129 individuals who were not active employees at Hempstead Schools at the time. “It is unclear why individuals would still be receiving pay after their termination dates,” the memorandum stated.

· Several employees listed with birth dates of Aug 31, 2017, several employees with ages exceeding 80 years old and one employee with a birth date of 2013.

·         The employee master file and the vendor master file identified several “vendors who shared addresses with employees.”

·         There is currently insufficient recognition of the severity of the financial challenges facing the District or the steps which will have to be taken to meet them

·          “Many” employees received more than $3,000 in overtime pay in a month and a few who received between $4,200 and $8,150 in overtime pay in a month.

·         ·A vendor that received $2.8 million over the last 5 years had provided numerous instances of duplicate billings – including invoices by a single tutor providing home instruction services to multiple students at the same time; and multiple appointments without approval signatures, which is required of parents for the claims.

Watch the CBS documentary 37% to learn about how the district got to a 37%graduation rate here: https://newyork.cbslocal.com/37percent/