Discussion continues surrounding future of Cape Coral Charter Schools

Posted at 6:46 PM, Dec 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-13 18:46:15-05

CAPE CORAL, Fla-- Emotions running high for a second straight day. The finger-pointing continues involving the charter school superintendent, the mayor and an independent audit.

The audit found millions of dollars are gaining little interest in a bank account. The mayor claims charter schools should have been earning thousands in interest funds. But the superintendent believes this is just part of the mayor's vendetta against him. 

Those who spoke on Tuesday had a more civil tone, a very stark contrast to Monday night's fireworks.

"If there are questions and concerns about our budget, bring it to the board and we would love to hear it directly," said board member Rob Zivkovic. 

The governing board for Cape Coral Charter Schools is appointed by the Cape Coral City Council. The board said the city council has failed to bring any of the current issues directly to their attention. 

"We have emails and addresses and phone numbers, knock on my door," said Zivkovic. 

Currently, the board and council are in disagreement over charter school finances, the performance of Superintendent Nelson Stephenson and actions of Mayor Sawicki. 

"And we should be better, we should do better, we should understand that we are supposed to be role models and leaders and handle ourselves better," said Zivkovic. 

Zivkovic was referencing Monday night's meeting where the superintendent accused the mayor of overstepping her authority by questioning his handling of personnel and school funds. 

At Tuesday's meeting, students also spoke about their concern and how this controversy will affect their schools. 

"We are just worried about graduation, we want to get there, we don't want these problems that can be avoided easily with just a simple conversation," said one student. 

Board members said moving forward they hope to work collaboratively with the city council to improve communication. 

"I think all of us, our heart is in the right place," said board member Odette Boyer.