Mason Classical Academy says new report exonerates the charter school

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An entrance to Mason Classical Academy. (Credit: WINK News)
An entrance to Mason Classical Academy. (Credit: WINK News)

Mason Classical Academy said a new report by an independent law firm exonerates the charter school completely. It goes against a Collier County Public Schools report issued in June that claimed the Academy mismanaged taxpayer money and violated the Sunshine Law.

The Academy is on the offensive. The president did not hold back in her criticism of CCPS, which said there is no basis for accusing the charter school of wrongdoing. This was merely a hit piece,” Kelly Lichter said, “used to defame our good name and assassinate the character of MCA’s leadership.”

The investigation by John Fishbane, CCPS general counsel, criticized the Academy’s leadership, accusing administrators of a lack of financial oversight, Sunshine Law violations and mismanagement.

The Academy commissioned its investigation. Lichter said the independent law firm’s report exonerates it. “John Fisbhane conducted a year-long investigation that was unfair, biased, inaccurate report of our school.”

CCPS wasted no time responding to the Academy. It called the report a waste of time and tens of thousands of dollars in taxpayer money.

“If there was such exoneration,” said Chad Oliver, executive director of communications for CCPS, “then why would Ms. Lichter at mediation sign off on a corrective action plan with Collier County Public Schools.”

CCPS pointed to a letter from Hillsdale College, which supported the charter school until the school district’s report. “Calling it, ‘factual, exact, detailed and factual,'” Oliver said. “That’s not coming from Collier County Public Schools. That’s coming from Hillsdale College. A strong advocate for charter schools in this country and the partner to MCA.”

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