Friday, August 10, 2012
FCPS Agrees to Repay Grant Funds Under Agreement with U.S. Department of Justice
Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) will repay funds provided by a U.S. Department of Education grant, along with penalties, as part of an agreement reached over falsified signatures and information on the grant application. The agreement was reached with the U.S. Department of Justice; FCPS will repay $1 million to the federal government.
The grant application, filed in 2000, was to fund the Gear-Up program at Glasgow Middle School, a program to encourage at-risk students to prepare for college. FCPS subsequently discovered that signatures and other information on the application had been falsified. It then terminated the grant, stopped making claims for grant payments, and self reported the falsification to the U.S. Department of Education in 2004. All funds received by the grant were spent on student programs at Glasgow.
Notwithstanding Glasgow’s successful Gear-Up program, the federal government claimed that FCPS was potentially liable for multi-million dollar repayments and penalties under the False Claims Act. After more than eight years of discussion, the Department of Justice and FCPS reached a settlement.
In response to this incident, FCPS strengthened its grant control procedures. The individual who was responsible for the grant application is no longer employed by FCPS.
Note: For more information, contact the FCPS Department of Communications and Community Outreach at 571-423-1200.