WASHINGTON, D.C . – The District has filed a civil suit charging that a D.C. resident falsely certified that she was the legal guardian of a D.C. high school student and that the student lived with her in the District, thereby fraudulently receiving free schooling in a District public school, Attorney General Irvin B. Nathan announced today. The District alleges that the D.C. resident was not the student’s legal guardian, that the student was actually living with her mother in Maryland and was not therefore eligible for free tuition in D.C.
The lawsuit was filed in D.C. Superior Court against both the D. C. resident, Darnetta Paige, who is an employee of a D.C. public charter school, and the student’s mother, Jacinta L. Mason. The District is seeking to recover from Ms. Mason the $31,294 tuition owed as a result of her daughter’s attending a D.C. public high school for four years. The District is also seeking an award and civil penalties under the False Claims Act against Ms. Paige, who allegedly made the false statements about the student’s place of residence.
Attorney General Nathan said his office “will continue to investigate and take action against all those who fraudulently avoid paying non-resident tuition to the District.” The Office of the Attorney General is working with officials of the D.C. Public Schools and the Office of the State Superintendent of Education to identify cases where individuals have failed to pay tuition for non-resident students at the expense of District taxpayers.
- Ted Gest
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