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Principal hit with five-day suspension

Photo by Carly Farrell

Photo by Carly Farrell

ALBANY, Ga. — Morningside Elementary principal Gloria Baker has been suspended for five days while Dougherty County School System Police look into allegations that her middle school daughter received free or reduced-cost lunches for as many as two years.

Baker’s daughter attends Merry Acres Middle School, and with her mother’s reported salary of $90,000 per year, would not qualify for free or reduced-cost lunches.

Baker previously served as principal at Albany Middle School

“We’re still in the early stages of the investigation,” DCSS Assistant Police Chief Julian Phillips said. “At this point we are looking into what happened. We are still at the allegation stage.”

Phillips said investigators are currently focused on finding out who signed the lunch applications.

Comments

waltspecht 2 years, 11 months ago

Isn't that the school that got the computers seized? Funny how these things work out isn't it?

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T_Paine 2 years, 11 months ago

Take a look at the "More like this story" links...

"CRCT Investigators Seize Jackson Heights Computers"

Oh, that's the one you were referring to. Different school.

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2020 2 years, 11 months ago

It's funny how people comment without knowing the facts. No the school isn't the same school. I can see how you could confused. Jackson Heights and Morningside sound similar. Not!

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waltspecht 2 years, 11 months ago

I asked a question because I wasn't sure. Isn't that what you were taught in School when a question mark ended a sentence? Also, I don't see the referred to article in the "More like this".

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Shinedownfan 2 years, 11 months ago

Well, they're both on the east side, and they're both in the 'hood... same difference... LOL!

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DirtyMartini 2 years, 11 months ago

Well, I'm disappointed to learn that they are two different schools. Instead of just one bad apple, now we know we have at least two. How many poor bad apples are there anyway?

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Terihdfxr 2 years, 11 months ago

Its about time all these goverment scammers get caught. So sad that she is one in a million, that do scam the system. These are the reasons our goverment is broke. Misusing funds that were ment to help people that really need it. They need to see if she is getting food stamps, and free medical also. $90,000.00 a year and cant buy her child lunches. There are familys out there making a whole lot less and not recieving assistance. Shame Shame Shame. If this went on for two years shouldnt she be arrested for fruad ? and theft ?

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Shinedownfan 2 years, 11 months ago

Bet it went on at the Elementary School too... they need to investigate that, but it may be too late.

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Shinedownfan 2 years, 11 months ago

I know, right? The article doesnt even mention that!

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supersquawker 2 years, 11 months ago

Well unsurprisingly it turns out to be "with"

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supersquawker 2 years, 11 months ago

They sure do know how to work that system!!

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Sally_O 2 years, 11 months ago

Food stamps? She's probably drawing welfare checks as well.

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2020 2 years, 11 months ago

She's probably paying taxes for your children to eat free.

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Sally_O 2 years, 11 months ago

She's probably found some way to get herself exempt from paying taxes as well.

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firefly 2 years, 11 months ago

If found guilty, I'd like to see some charges brought forth!

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tballplayer 2 years, 11 months ago

I would love to see the application. Will there be fraud charges brought against her, or will the suspension be all that's said and done?

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chinaberry25 2 years, 11 months ago

Child's lunch is only $1.50 per day and breakfast is free.

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mrnobody 2 years, 11 months ago

And some wonder why there is a culture of entitlement and lack of responsibility in our area? It's amazing that someone who alone makes more than most of the combined household incomes in our community was getting free handouts, when thousands of others had to actually pay for their kids' food with less income.

This is me facepalming right now.

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supersquawker 2 years, 11 months ago

If you make $90,000 per year you are in the top 25% of income earners in the USA.

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Camilla2005 2 years, 11 months ago

Exactly. It is sad that some struggle to pay when so many don't.

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ObjectiveEyes 2 years, 11 months ago

If this proves to be true and she's not prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, taxpayers should be marching on City Hall. Do the math (hypothetical): 180 school days, 2 meals per day, $5 per meal for 2 years equals $3600. Even if the child (and this isn't about her) only ate 75% of the time, that's $2700. If it's not enough, combined with apparent fraud, for federal charges to be sought, it should be. The troubling part is...this is just a microcosm of the DOCO school system. I'm pretty familiar with the Lee Co system and I often wonder, "...if Lee Co is this screwed up, I can only imagine the mess that DOCO is..."

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Nunnally 2 years, 11 months ago

SMH......Throw her under the jail.........

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supersquawker 2 years, 11 months ago

Hey that $3600 goes a long way towards a Mercedes or BMW payment.

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chinaberry25 2 years, 11 months ago

Breakfast is free for everybody and student lunches are $1.50. We are talking about less than $500 so it will not be felony. So she will not be fired because it must be a felony. The forms are passed out to everyone first week of school. So all they have to do is fill it out. How much is actually checked is anybody's guess. That would take a full time employee.

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ObjectiveEyes 2 years, 11 months ago

"Breakfast is free for everybody and student lunches are $1.50." Well, there's part of the problem...the taxpayer's are obviously subsidizing ALL of the meals! $1.50 cannot begin to cover the cost of the lunch! Geez, what a freaking joke! My observation is this: if she will commit fraud for "less than $500", how can she be trusted with MUCH larger $ figures? $500 - $3600...doesn't matter to me...she must GO!

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TheBoss 2 years, 11 months ago

They Do! Its is the Director of Nutrition Services. Another $ 90K person.

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chinaberry25 2 years, 11 months ago

Another thought. A teacher, not here, was vacationing in France and a photo was taken and she put it on her Facebook. She was drinking a mixed drink in a restaurant.She was fired for this and the Supreme Court upheld the charges. Now which is the worse? Come to Albany and you can get away with just about anything.

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TrixibelleBento 2 years, 11 months ago

I agree that you have to watch what you put on Facebook, but that doesn't seem right that a person gets fired because they have a drink in their hand! I understand that a teacher has to be held to a certain standard, but she shouldn't have shared her profile with anyone who mattered. Keep your professional life your professional life, and keep your personal life personal! This is why I don't have a Facebook account; less trouble for me to get into. Plus, I don't need to bore people with the minutae of my life.

Anyway, the principal in question must pay back the money, get reprimanded, and a demotion. Maybe that would show others that you can't get away with that stuff. She knows what she did was wrong.

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Outtahere 2 years, 11 months ago

If the allegations are true, I hope she gets punished to the full extent and also FIRED!!!!! Someone that dishonest should not be allowed to hold such a great position as PRINCIPLE!!! I work extremely hard to make my $30,000 and struggle with making ends meet!!! SHE DOES NOT DESERVE THAT POSITION AND IT SHOULD BE TAKEN FROM HER ASAP!!!! She is the complete representation of what is wrong with Albany!! What a disgrace!!!!

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supersquawker 2 years, 11 months ago

Each and every week we have excellent new examples of everything that is wrong with the prevailing mindset in this town. Thank God that some authorities are responding to these issues. However, it's just the tip of the iceberg called "I AM ENTITLED".

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whattheheck 2 years, 11 months ago

I think the salary of $90,517 is only what the state paid without the county supplement. Honk if that is wrong.

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whattheheck 2 years, 11 months ago

I will bet next month's welfare check that this is one of many such cases. When one person pulls a scam and the word gets around that there is "low hanging fruit", there will be other pickers. And it wont be just the principals--count the teachers in the crowd.

The matter should be reviewed by someone outside the DCSS--look at what happened with the internal CRCT. This one is easy to prove. We may wind up needing even more replacement teachers.

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Guest8675309 2 years, 11 months ago

This story, just like all of the DCSS employee stories will fade away within a week or two. Remember the story of the Principal at Southside Middle School who sexually assaulted a paraprofessional? Nothing has happened to him and he currently serves as an Assistant Principal at Monroe High School. He refused to take a polygraph test and the victim took two tests and passed them both. Would you want him dealing with your daughter? Our children turn into criminals partly due to the poor role models that are in their schools. It is time to get rid of the filth, send a message that crime does NOT pay! The way to send this message is to NOT pass the SPLOST! TELL the School Board that the citizens will not fund the SPLOST, I mean slush fund, until they clean up their act!

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MRKIA 2 years, 11 months ago

I AGREE, DO NOT PASS SPLOST UNTIL EVERY AREA OF THE DCSS IS AUDITED AND ALL OF THE CHEATERS,THIEVES, LIARS AND SEXUAL PREDATORS ARE REMOVED AND PROSECUTED. FROM THE SCHOOL BOARD DOWN TO A SCHOOL BUS DRIVER THESE PEOPLE WORK FOR THE TAXPAYERS. IF THEY DON'T WANT TO TAKE ORDERS FROM US LET THEM OPEN THEIR OWN SCHOOLS. LETS OCCUPY ALBANY.

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QUIK 2 years, 11 months ago

When I first heard about both parents being arrested I was shocked but not surpised. To arrest parents for falsely receiving lunch for their child is ignorant but not surpising for this area. Why not let the school board handle the matter and if the board afterward wants to file crimminal charges that's fine. Wasting law enforcement time to arrest both parents (2 set of paperwork and pictures!!) is just another sign of the over the top leaders in this city. I understand why many are making such harsh comments about her salary in this matter but it's not the point. If her salary was $10 over the limit, should she still be arrested? I have traveled the world and have never seen a city so quick condemn people than here but I forgot this is the bible-belt region. Be more concern with lack of a vital downtown, the monopoly of one hospital and firing all of the 'old thinking' city leaders.

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Guest8675309 2 years, 11 months ago

Quik, While I understand your frustration with wasting law enforcement time, the school issues are keeping large companies and industry out of Albany because they read our news and do not want to bring their business to Albany. They do not want their children to attend schools in this area due to the lack of accountability and standards. These businesses need an educated workforce. If Albany does not increase its exports, they are doomed to fail and continue to be the fourth poorest area in the nation. It is time to put race aside and focus on creating jobs! We cannot do this until we have an educated workforce!

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