By: Lindsay Watts
WASHINGTON – There are new allegations that funds were misused in Prince George’s County Public Schools after an internal audit found excessive and inappropriate pay in the human resources department. The report shows mistakes add up to several hundred thousand dollars.
The audit, done by Prince George’s County Public Schools auditors, looked at human resources salaries over the last five years, which has been the time Schools CEO Dr. Kevin Maxwell has been running the school system. It found multiple employees are being paid inappropriately – with some of them getting excessive raises and promotions. The final tab – more than $300,000.
“There’s no oversight and we are just not being a good shepherd of the taxpayers’ money,” said Prince George’s County School Board member David Murray. Murray has been a longtime critic of Dr. Maxwell and his administration. He and fellow board member Ed Burroughs are speaking out about the newly-revealed problems.
“It’s disturbing,” Murray said. “I’m thinking about how many teachers we could have hired, money we could have put towards school supplies, towards student AP exams. I’m very disturbed.”
Prince George’s County Public Schools spokesman John White said Dr. Maxwell and his staff haven’t gotten a chance to go over the report, fact check the numbers or officially respond to this investigation. White said for now, this is a matter that is supposed to be confidential and the board members who are sharing details are “violating the confidentiality of the process.”
“I think they violated the process by giving raises that weren’t authorized,” Murray said in response.
This is just the latest scandal involving raises. FOX 5 was first to report on members of Dr. Maxwell’s executive cabinet who got salary hikes between $35,000 and $50,000 over just a few years.
Then, two months ago, there were allegations by board members that there were unauthorized raises for several central office employees that violated the law. Dr. Maxwell still hasn’t publicly responded to those claims.
There has been acknowledgment that there were prior improper raises found in the human resources department. Dr. Maxwell said at the time he wasn’t aware and has corrected the salaries of those who were identified.
It’s unclear when Dr. Maxwell will have a response to this latest investigation. White said Maxwell will not do any more media interviews during his time as Schools CEO.