Salinas Charter Blames Monterey's Office of Education for Financial Troubles, Asks for $250,000 Loan

A Monterey County charter school which was asked to surrender its charter by the Monterey County Office of Education (MCOE) last week is fighting back, blaming MCOE for the bulk of its financial problems and asking for a $60,000 refund and a loan of $250,000 to keep it open for the remainder of the school year.

Millennium Charter High School in Salinas (MCHS) says accounting errors by MCOE are what put the school in financial jeopardy, contrary to the office’s findings that staff problems and declining enrollment are to blame.

"Though MCOE has admitted to making the errors, MCOE has not worked to make them right," said MCHS Board President José Arreola (The Californian). "There was no attempt to correct the errors in a way that would not hurt MCHS cash flow."

Arreola added that MCEO made a number of financial decisions without the charter board’s approval and did not provide the board with pertinent financial statements. In addition to the loan and the refund for accounting services, the school is requesting that MCOE not vote for charter revocation.

MCOE provides accounting services to MCHS, but budget development and management is handled by the school. Millennium is currently facing a $312,988 budget deficit according to a recent audit.


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