Former Inglewood Unified School District Board Member Bishop Young helped run the district into the ground and is publicly supporting a charter school being sued by the state of California for misuse of public funds. Under his leadership, IUSD became a fiscal mess and was put into state receivership. The dismal quality of education Young presided over gave charter schools a foothold in Inglewood that usurped funds that were alleged to be mismanaged. Young is now writing opinions in support of Today’s Fresh Start Charter School charter, whose owners have a long history of fiscal malfeasance.
The Los Angeles Times launched an investigation into Clark and Jeanette Parker, in March 2019, who own and operate several charter school locations in Compton, Inglewood and Los Angeles. Their investigation found that the Parker’s avoided closure by donating to prominent elected officials campaigns, many of which publicly provided support during the schools regular charter renewal process.
Many of the people responsible for regulating the couple’s schools, including school board members and state elected officials, had accepted thousands of dollars from the Parkers in campaign contributions.
The Parker’s financial issues date back to 2007 when Los Angeles Unified School District revoked their charter in 2015. The revocation occurred days before the start of the 2015-16 school year.
From LA School Report:
Investigations and reports of the Today’s Fresh Start Charter Schools go back to 2007 and involve issues of nepotism, accounting discrepancies, misreporting enrollment, building safety and other legal concerns. A finding from the California Department of Education included questions about a claimed reimbursement of $455,739 to the child development program and “registration fees and two parking tickets for the president’s Rolls Royce and Mercedes automobiles.”
The Parkers were saved when Compton Unified granted them a charter, which ultimately allowed Today’s Fresh Start to continue operating in Inglewood and Los Angeles.
By January of this year both Inglewood Unified and Los Angeles County Office of Education voted to close the Inglewood location citing a long history of financial problems and mixed academic performance, as corroborated by the school’s teachers.
The Parker’s purchased the former United Health Plan building on Imperial Hwy and instead of using it to house the school, they erected it in the adjacent parking lot.
Bishop Young says parents shouldn’t have to worry about finding a new school for their child, when there are THREE Inglewood Unified schools in the immediate area to choose from: Bennett-Kew, Worthington and Woodworth-Monroe. Worthington even provides dual-immersion classes.
“Inglewood Unified School District is committed to providing a high-quality education to all of our students in our public schools, including charters,” said Board President D’Artagnan Scorza. “No charter school is above the law and that includes Today’s Fresh Charter. We strongly recommend that the state board denies their renewal appeal.”
For over a decade the Parker’s have violated conflict of interest laws and enriched themselves on the taxpayers dime which has enabled them able to buy their way out of closure through campaign donations as found by the LA Times.
They are currently under investigation for fraud as the state Department of Education has filed suit against the Parkers to recover public funds estimated more than $19 million misspent while also overseeing several day-care centers in South L.A
The time has come to put children first.