Gull Lake Schools Out More Than $480,000 in Dispute With State Over Student Count

Lauren Williams's picture
Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Gull Lake Community Schools has had $480,000 deducted from its state-aid payments for 2011-12 because the district violated educational standards for its newly established Gull Lake Virtual School.

The district failed to meet a requirement that online students communicate with their "mentor" instructor at least once a week by phone or email, according to a ruling last month by Kathleen Weller, director of the Michigan Department of Education's Office of Audits.

Weller's ruling upheld findings by Ona Doolittle, pupil accounting auditor for the Kalamazoo Regional Educational Service Agency, who also raised concerns about the Gull Lake's new Homeschool Partnership Program, according to dozens of emails and documents obtained by MLive/Kalamazoo Gazette through the Freedom of Information Act.

Gull Lake officials are asking Michael Flanagan, the Michigan Superintendent of Public Instruction, to overturn Weller's ruling.

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