Lion of Judah Academy

“Lion of Judah charter school leader indicted, accused of illegally spending $1.2 million in public money.” The Plain Dealer (OH), 2/15/2013

CLEVELAND, Ohio -- The head of Lion of Judah Academy, a troubled Cleveland charter school, has been indicted by a Cuyahoga County grand jury, accused of illegally funneling $1.2 million of public funds to a business he formed to run the school.

Arrest warrants were issued Thursday for Romey Coles, his wife Rosina, Carl Shye Jr. and Terrence Shelton. They weren't in custody as of early Friday evening, according to a spokesman for the Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Office.

Shye, the school's former treasurer, was sentenced to two years in prison in October for stealing more than $470,000 in federal education funds from four publicly funded but privately operated charter schools in other parts of the state.

Four other people, two companies and the Church of the Lion of Judah, which Coles also led, were defendants in the indictment released Friday.

"This is one of the most tangled messes of self-dealing and breach of trust with taxpayer dollars that I have seen," said a statement from State Auditor Dave Yost, whose office has been trying to piece together the school's financial dealings for years... 


The financial records of six Cleveland-area charter schools are in such bad shape that the Ohio auditor's office says they cannot be properly checked.

All of the schools declared "unauditable" on Tuesday are overseen by the Cleveland-based Ashe Culture Center, which is facing revocation of its sponsorship authority by the Ohio Department of Education.

Four of the unauditable schools (Arts Academy West, Elite Academy of the Arts, Lion of Judah Academy and Marcus Garvey Academy) are in Cleveland, and one (The Arts Academy) is in Lorain.

The sixth school, Greater Heights Academy, had campuses in Cleveland Heights and Cleveland but shut down abruptly in November 2008 because of money problems. The auditor's office is trying to untangle financial dealings at Greater Heights as far back as 2006.

The five unauditable schools that are still open received more than $5.5 million from the state last year to educate over 700 students…

The pressure escalated in September when the Education Department charged that Ashe failed to act on evidence of improper test-taking at Marcus Garvey Academy.

A scoring company had found a high percentage of answers on state tests were erased and changed from wrong to right, but Ashe concluded there was no evidence of wrongdoing and considered the case closed. The Education Department did not agree and still has the scores under review.

The department also has several other problems with Ashe, including poor academic performance at some schools, cases of school staffers lacking necessary licenses, and improper closing procedures at Greater Heights Academy that left students without transcripts…


Anonymous said...

Lion of judah academy has been a school that has shown continual improvement and inspite of its sponsors alligations has not been entangled in any foul play in their test the leader of that school is a man that cares for that community and kids and deserves the credit with his staff to have made a difference in a very difficult sitituation. I've seen the bishop take time with these kids and fight for their education. Please lets not throw out these efforts in our comments on these charter school some are educated.
Thanks lion of judah staff and bishop Ward 7 needs you.

A concerned watcher

Anonymous said...

Yep, Romey and Rosina Coles are upstanding citizens. They stole funds rom their phony church and even worse, they stole tax dollars that were supposed to be used to education poor little kids. What is worse than stealing from the poor.?

Anonymous said...

Romey and Rosina Coles are not upstanding citizens, they are people of greed, lies, and crooks. Romey Coles is an adulterer, and both he and Rosina are still well know drug dealers as well. Romey makes frequent trips out of state transporting drugs, and using the word of God and the church to do his dirt. I hope that the Cuyahoga County Prosecuter, as well as the Feds really dig deeper, I assure you they will find out much more about the self righteous Coles, than what God has already allowed to be exposed of Romey and Rosina Coles.

Anonymous said...

I knew he wasn't right in his expensive suits and his nosey wife asking about my personal life and always asking for money and get mad when they didn't reach their quota then the next message is trying to make u feel bad about not giving more first of all if u have faith in God your not asking for amount and would know that God will provide all your needs. They had their own agenda whats done in the dark always come to light time for them to get what they deserve while they judging people money is the root of all Evil!!!

Anonymous said...

What is happening with their case? How can I find out? Thank you!

Anonymous said...

Well, as always, God fights the battle of the righteous.
Glory b to God!!! The battle is not urs its the LORD.

Anonymous said...

As always God shall fight the battle of the righteous. He is the judge. Glory b to GOD.

Anonymous said...

I worked for them and they still owe myself and lot of employee's money ridiculous and sad!! And you call yourself a man of God please