According to a recent article in NewsOK, an Oklahoma state audit into the activities of Dove Charter Schools, operated by the Gülen-affiliated Sky Foundation, revealed that the charter school network has, to date, embezzled over $3 million of Oklahoma taxpayer money. The full audit is available here.
The foundation that operates Dove Charter Schools in Oklahoma City and Tulsa has billed the public millions of dollars more in lease payments for its school buildings than the foundation has paid to rent and purchase the buildings, according to a state audit released Wednesday.
The Sky Foundation, which manages Dove Charter Schools, has collected about $3.182 million more in lease payments for use of the Dove Science Academy-OKC school site than it paid to originally purchase the property, auditors said.
“This has been going on for a long time. We just looked at a couple of years,” state Auditor Gary Jones said.
School foundations normally are created to provide private financial assistance to schools, but the Sky Foundation didn’t operate that way, auditors said.
“We did not find any evidence of Sky soliciting funds on behalf of the schools or donating funds to the schools,” auditors said. “It appears the schools were supporting Sky instead of Sky supporting the schools.”
Although it occurred outside the time period being audited, state auditors also noted that the Sky Foundation bought the Raindrop Turkish House at 4444 N Classen Blvd. in Oklahoma City for $780,000 in May 2008 and sold it a little more than two years later for $1,025,000, realizing a profit of $245,000.
“We believe the funds used to purchase this building and the profit received in the sale of the building should be satisfactorily accounted for,” auditors said, suggesting the need for a follow-up audit.