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PTA president wants name cleared in bank account controversy

Tuesday, June 4, 2013 9:24 PM
Last updated Wednesday, June 5, 2013 1:32 AM
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Richmond County Council of PTAs President Monique Braswell on Tuesday called for the “accountability, censorship or immediate removal” of the organization’s state president and an apology from school Superintendent Frank Roberson for how they handled an investigation into a PTA bank account of which she was treasurer.

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Braswell said an investigation by the state PTA found no wrongdoing on her part but that officials have yet to publicly clear her name.  MICHAEL HOLAHAN
MICHAEL HOLAHAN
Braswell said an investigation by the state PTA found no wrongdoing on her part but that officials have yet to publicly clear her name.

Roberson initially requested the state PTA investigate the Willis Foreman Elementary School PTA after problems arose this year with bookkeeping and access to the chapter’s bank account.

An audit of the school conducted May 16 by Georgia PTA Treasurer Richard Jones as part of the investigation showed Jones “did not find any evidence that anyone had taken any PTA funds.” He did, however, identify some issues with how checks were requested and other bookkeeping concerns.

Braswell said Jones’ audit, along with minutes from a meeting May 9 of Georgia PTA and Richmond County Board of Education officials show that there was no wrongdoing on her part but that the officials who questioned her have yet to publicly clear her name.

Roberson said that he never accused Braswell of stealing money and does not owe her an apology.

The investigation was requested after the school received a noncompliance letter from the state Feb. 1 for not turning in a 2011-12 audit, membership information and dues. Willis Foreman PTA President Baine Flournoy and Principal Brenda Taylor also questioned several transactions Braswell signed for during the summer using the school’s account and her refusal to release money for an end-of-the-year event.

“I am man enough to apologize if an apology were in order,” Roberson said Tuesday. “We do not owe her an apology.”

Braswell, who oversees all the PTAs in Richmond County, was appointed interim treasurer for Willis Foreman in April 2012 to fill a vacancy at the school and was re-elected for the 2012-13 school year in November.

According to the audit completed by Jones, the school must submit $156 for state and national dues for the 2012-13 term.

He said the chapter was not properly completing check request forms, had not turned in a 990 form, had insufficient minutes taken at meetings and had problems with record-keeping.

Jones said officers should never write checks to “cash,” which was done at least four times last year, but that all money was accounted for.

According to minutes from the May 9 meeting, principals are “doing what they are being told to do” and Braswell was “doing what PTA leaders are trained to do,” but more training is recommended so principals and PTA leaders can work together better.

Minutes indicated Willis Foreman had no records to determine its PTA had any members and Flournoy was not considered to be the president since he issued a resignation earlier this year, even though he rescinded it the next day.

Braswell, who also announced she was running for school board’s District 9 next year, said she did not want to “be known as a thief.” She said the Georgia PTA leadership did not stand up for her during the investigation and has let her down.

State PTA President Donna Kosicki did not immediately return a request for a comment. Braswell said she asked for an apology from Roberson because she has always supported him. She said she will continue to work for the betterment of the school system and the children.

Roberson said he and his staff have not received the audit from Georgia PTA and so have not been able to review the findings.

“We’re not going to always agree on every issue,” Braswell said. “I will always stand tall when it comes down to the benefit of our children and our parents.”

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Young Fred
21145
Points
Young Fred 06/04/13 - 10:29 pm
7
0
"“I’m a fighter,” Braswell

"“I’m a fighter,” Braswell said. “I go hard for the children. Everybody knows that that knows me. I go hard for this education system. We’re not going to always agree on every issue … I will always stand tall when it comes down to the benefit of our children and our parents.” "

Everyone that knows anything knows the PTO is a joke.

soapy_725
44131
Points
soapy_725 06/05/13 - 06:07 am
1
0
PTO equals another source of money for
Unpublished

the school system. A slush fund. A system that hasn't a clue about money management. Their own money or that of others.

dsterling9
1255
Points
dsterling9 06/05/13 - 08:05 am
2
0
TRIED IN THE PRESS

One problem in this case and others it appears she was tried and convicted in the media before the investigation was completed. Our Board of Education is a mess anyway.

Spudzee22
35
Points
Spudzee22 06/05/13 - 08:37 am
3
2
Ms. Braswell needs to thank the BOE

for clearing her name! Clearly her book keeping practices are inconsistant with PTO requirements. I wonder if she is going to demand a public apology from the National Weather Service because she gets wet when it rains?

mrsbras
103
Points
mrsbras 06/05/13 - 08:40 am
2
2
yes

Your right i was but the board knew the truth from the start and so did some media outlets. Its all because people dont want me to run for a seat on that board.To add salt to the wound they started all this while i was in the hospital have both my n breast removed from cancer,but thank god im 98% cancer free and 100% ready for the fight its about children its not about anything other than that for me. i have said from the start i hadnt done anything wrong and if anyone anyone wanted the doc i had i was an open book

scoopdedoop64
2509
Points
scoopdedoop64 06/05/13 - 10:20 am
5
0
My Report Card

Is there any reason to believe that these people who cannot run public schools and increase the level of learning among the students can properly deal with business or give an apology when its due? Ms. Braswell if you want to be treated fairly then you should find a better institution to work for. There are some great teachers out there who have to fight against the system just to do their jobs. There are some teachers who should really be in another profession. Our public schools are a disgrace. In my opinion the grade they deserve is an "F".

mrsbras
103
Points
mrsbras 06/05/13 - 12:00 pm
2
2
@scoopdedoop believe meI dont

@scoopdedoop believe meI dont work for the system I am a parent and a volunteer. Im in the schools everyday not just my kids schools mostly all the school I see more things than they want me to.I speak up for teachers all the time,I know about alot of the unfair stuff that goes on. Yes we have some people that dont need to be doing anything in the school system at all.The people frame of minds is we cant do nothing about it.Thats there frame of mind not mines.I believe we can get this system to where it need to be first by making alot of changes that need to be made and we start with the board seats there are 5 seat up and there should be 5 people looking to get elected not get re elected.As far as the teachers there has been help for them for over a year but they dont take advantage of it.I plan on doing my part.

reader1
11
Points
reader1 06/05/13 - 01:04 pm
5
0
And this writing is an

And this writing is an example of the writing of one who is an officer for the PTO, or an example of the writing of one who wants to serve on the School Board? There is not even a proper, coherent sentence in the entire post! Heaven help the children that are supposed to be served by Richmond County schools.

prov227
3468
Points
prov227 06/05/13 - 01:13 pm
3
0
People run for office because ...

it's all about the children. These types give me hay fever. No one has a monopoly on "the children". It is also scary that one who is lax in handling other peoples' money (as the audit infers) wants to handle much larger spending budgets. But it's all about the children.

scoopdedoop64
2509
Points
scoopdedoop64 06/05/13 - 01:15 pm
2
0
Turning it around

@mrsbras, bless you for all you do. I am sorry for sounding off so bad on the school system. Its just that I know a lot of teachers and I hear their complaints and I see the students who don't do well and its heartbreaking. So much of it also comes from parents who don't get involved in their child's schooling. I know from experience that you can't just drop your child off at school each day and think that's all there is to it. I think your suggestions would also be helpful in changing the organization but it's going to take a long time to turn this around.

butterflygina
159
Points
butterflygina 06/05/13 - 05:32 pm
2
0
I don't believe that @mrsbras

I don't believe that @mrsbras is really Mrs. Braswell. I find it unbelievable that she would post something written up the way these posts are with the position she is in and the position she seeks. I will say, she does seek media attention ALL THE TIME and she got it this time. Perhaps not in the way in which she wanted. She is someone...who always has something to say...about everything.

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