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Shocker: Clayton Co. PTA misappropriated school funds

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A Clayton County parent-teacher association was forcibly shuttered this week after it was revealed the group’s treasurer had allegedly misappropriated thousands of school dollars.

Local police launched an investigation last week into the Martin Luther King, Jr. Elementary School PTA after a whistleblower flagged the pilfered funds, but authorities say they have yet to file charges against anyone in the group.

In a letter obtained by Atlanta ABC affiliate WSB-TV, Clayton schools chief Edmond Heatley said that the association’s treasurer is at the center of the controversy.

“According to school officials, concerned stakeholders and citizens, money is unaccounted for from the PTA at the school,” Heatley wrote to the Clayton County Police Department. “Specifically, it has been alleged that former PTA treasurer Mr. Xavier Ross has not accounted for thousands of dollars that he was entrusted with depositing.”

Prior to the allegations of embezzling school monies, Ross had trained his sights higher than the parent-teacher association: he was campaigning for a slot on the county’s school board.

The committee for change is growing stronger,” Ross posted just this morning to a Facebook profile boosting his candidacy.

“For the sake of Clayton students, we had better hope his ‘committee for change’ was permanently derailed,” one upset metro Atlanta teacher wrote Wednesday in an email to the Tipsheet. “Of course, he would probably fit in well on the school board.”

Clayton County schools became a national avatar for dysfunction when in 2008 it became only the third district nationwide in nearly 40 years to lose its accreditation for the ethical misdeeds of its school board.

- James Richardson

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