Inderkum High staffer on leave after student activity account comes up $48,000 short

An Inderkum High School staff member was put on paid administrative leave May 12, after auditors found at least $48,000 missing from the Associated Student Body Account at the North Natomas school. Another $167,000 was found in a safe and in drawers, instead of deposited in the bank, according to Natomas Unified district officials.

An investigation was launched and is ongoing, according to a letter sent to parents on Monday. It said the district has hired an accounting firm to examine the possibility of misconduct.

"We take this issue very seriously, " said Jim Sanders, district spokesman. "Safeguarding our school funds is a public trust. If misconduct is found, we will take any and all appropriate action. "

That action could include turning the findings over to law enforcement, according to the letter.

Associated Student Body accounts support student clubs, sports and activities. The money is generated from fundraisers, football games and the prom, according to the district. Natomas Unified officials said it will take some time to determine which accounts are missing money, if that can be determined at all.

"Since students are the victims of the missing funds, Natomas Unified will transfer $48,000 into the Inderkum ASB account to ensure that our students have access to the funds that they have raised or earned through their activities," said the letter.

The district will add more money to accounts if it is determined more is missing.

Sanders said that the irregularities were discovered during routine audits of the accounts. "Our current practice found the problem and enabled us to intervene," he said. "We are open to improving our practices in the future."

The letter said that it is possible that other schools were affected.