99 pages of 'slush fund' complaints against former East Ridge principal

After filing a data practices request and months of waiting, Fox 9 News has obtained the 99 pages of complaints against former East Ridge High School principal Aaron Harper. Harper allegedly misused school district funds, maintaining a "slush fund" of cash from student daily parking fees to make purchases without documentation.

The complaints

Page 1 of the document stack lists the alleged monetary infractions, followed by page-after-page of evidence to support the complaints:

East Ridge High School has run over budget by up to $20,000 over the past several years.

Mr. Harper maintained a "slush fund" of cash from student daily parking fees.

Mt. Harper used the slush fund to pay for food for students and staff, to reimburse staff members for purchases, or to make other purchases without providing documentation or an explanation.

Mr. Harper received $200 out of the slush fund to pay for banquet tickets for five staff members, including him, at a cost of $29 each. The location of the additional cash is unknown.

Mr. Harper failed to follow district policies and practices for purchasing food, supplies and equipment, and failed to receive appropriate authorization prior to making purchases.

Mr. Harper used district funds to purchase iPads, and the location of the purchased equipment is unknown.

Mr. Harper used district funds to purchase a personal membership to Sam's Club.

Mr. Harper used district funds to purchase gift cards, and the location of the gift cards is unknown.

Mr. Harper used district funds to purchase youth softball equipment for an East Ridge Athletics Association (EAA) youth softball team that he coached, and the location of the equipment is unknown.

Mr. Harper allowed EAA groups to reserve space in the high school without paying the rental fee.

Mr. Harper used district funds to purchase hurdles, and the location of the hurdles is unknown.

Hr. Harper used district funds to purchase knife sets for the family and consumer sciences department that had not been requested by that department, and received and accepted a gift set of knives valued at $1,000.

Mr. Harper received clothing and shoes for himself and his family from a district vendor.

Mr. Harper took clothing and items out of the school store and did not pay for them.

Mr. Harper took district sanders and golf carts home for personal use.

Harper's resignation

Aaron Harper abruptly resigned in November, citing "personal and professional choices." At that time, district officials released a short statement saying Harper "was not disciplined, the district did not pay him to resign, and he has acknowledged the district treated him fairly in all respects."

The South Washington County School District had no comment on the release of the complaints against Harper.

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