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Edelen wants more accountability in schools

Wikimedia Commons

Wikimedia Commons

BREATHITT/LETCHER COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) Eastern Kentucky is not a stranger to corruption, but State Auditor Adam Edelen is working to keep it out of our school districts.

Four districts in Eastern Kentucky were part of 14 found to have what he calls a lack of transparency and accountability.

“We just need to see tighter controls and policies and procedures and checks and balances in place to make sure more serious instances of abuse aren’t allowed to occur,” Edelen said.

Reports from the past year show Breathitt County experienced some of the worst abuse in the state while former superintendent Arch Turner was in office. He is now serving time in prison in a federal vote buying case.

“The fact that there was not a proper over site role coming from the board, and that the superintendent were significant to the detriment to the county taxpayers and the Breathitt County students is a serious issue,” Edelen added.

Reports from other districts in our region showed minor issues like Letcher County, which at the time was managed under former superintendent Anna Craft.

“While the issues we uncovered in Letcher County matter in that you really need appropriate level of over site between your superintendent and your board and certainly any expenses that are incurred in the business of running a school district need to be properly documented, it certainly doesn’t rise to the level of some of the abuses that we have seen,” Edelen said.

Craft has since retired and Edelen tells us the board and new superintendent are working to make sure they accept the recommendations of his report.

The Breathitt County school district is now being run by the state.

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