photo via Cambridge Education/Facebook
Charter school founder Marcus May is accused of using millions of dollars from parents and Ohio and Florida taxpayers for personal items and lavish vacations. He is also suspected of using public and private funds designated for students' education to expand his business in Akron, Cleveland, Columbus and Dayton.
As the founder of Newpoint Education Partners and Cambridge Education, which manages about 20 public charter schools in Ohio and 15 more in Florida, May is responsible for supplying schools with necessary services and supplies. He abused this power by more than doubling the cost of school uniforms, desks, computers and website design, the Akron Beacon-Journal reports
"My co-owners and I asked for and today accepted Mr. May's resignation as managing member of Cambridge. We are now in discussions to remove him completely from ownership in the company because we feel it's in the best interest of our schools," Cambridge Executive Director John Stack told the Beacon
Topping it all off, May's business partner, Cincinnati businessman Steven Kunkemoeller, was arrested
Wednesday in Florida for racketeering and fraud.
A Florida prosecutor claims the two men embellished enrollment, misappropriated public funds, fabricated invoices and created a network of limited liability companies. Reports show millions of dollars unaccounted for, clearly not used for educational purposes.
So where did the money go?
Bank and property records indicate excessive spending, including $11,000 for plastic surgery and a $10,000 jet ski. Both May and Kunkemoeller made hefty mortgage payments, and travel records show trips to Cancun, Iceland and several other countries.
However, state auditor Dave Yost has not confirmed an Ohio investigation into the theft and fraud committed by the business partners.
"Our office is aware of the situation in Florida and it's been on our radar for six months," Yosts' public information officer, Dominic Binkley, told the Beacon
. "I can say we are monitoring it but I can't comment that we are taking any actions on it."