Alberta home schooling agency stripped of accreditation to take legal action

Click to play video: 'Alberta home-school parents speak out after closure of Cold Lake private school'
Alberta home-school parents speak out after closure of Cold Lake private school
WATCH ABOVE: Parents say they have been left scrambling after a home-schooling association representing 3,500 students across Alberta was shut down by the province. Sarah Kraus filed this report on October 27. – Oct 27, 2016

A Cold Lake, Alta. private school at the centre of a spending scandal said it has retained legal counsel.

In a statement posted to its website Thursday, the Wisdom Home Schooling Society said it has sought legal help to “oppose the removal of accreditation.”

RELATED: Alberta government shuts down Cold Lake private school; province says insufficient accountability

Earlier this week, the province shut down Trinity Christian School Association after an audit found numerous financial and conflict-of-interest concerns.

The home schooling society is subcontracted by the association. Registration and accreditation for Trinity Christian School Association was cancelled effective Tuesday, Oct. 25.

Trinity receives $5.5 million in public money a year, and Education Minister David Eggen said much of it was redirected to the Wisdom Home Schooling Society with no oversight or accountability.

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The report alleged conflict of interest in lease and contract deals along with public money being spent to cover off ineligible expenses like babysitting and funeral expenses. There was also double-dipping on mileage. Public funds were spent on food, alcohol, gifts, gift cards, groceries, theatre tickets and other staff functions, said the report.

The statement from Wisdom continues with a denial of the accusations coming from Alberta Education.

READ MORE: Alberta home schooling agency fires back at government after funding pulled

“Wisdom’s holding of funds on behalf of Trinity is neither illegal nor deceptive, a fact that is expected to be substantiated by the Courts in the days ahead,” the statement reads.

Alberta Education said it has not received notice of any legal action from Trinity Christian School Association and reiterated its relationship, or lack thereof, with the association.

“Wisdom Home Schooling is not a public or private school authority and has no legal relationship with Alberta Education or legal authority under the School Act, Private School Regulation or Home Education Regulation,” spokesperson Jeremy Nolais said.

Trinity oversees 3,500 home schooled students and another 13 in a classroom setting.

The province has notified the Canada Revenue Agency and the RCMP.

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