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Former Bloomfield teacher pleads guilty to defrauding Albuquerque charter schools
Ousted Albuquerque administrator worked for local district before resigning last week
FARMINGTON — A former Bloomfield High School teacher has pleaded guilty to federal theft, fraud and false statement charges involving a group of Albuquerque charter schools he founded.
David Scott Glasrud, 50, pleaded guilty on Wednesday to nine felony charges, including theft from programs receiving federal funds, wire fraud, mail fraud and making false statements, according to a press release from the U.S. Department of Justice.
Glasrud founded four charter schools, collectively known as the Southwest Learning Center Schools, in Albuquerque starting in 1999 and served as the head administrator until August 2014, according to the press release.
Over the course of 15 years, Glasrud defrauded the charter schools for his personal benefit in a variety of ways, including rerouting school money through fake educational consultant companies he created for the schools to contract with.
Glasrud used one company to rent a building to house one charter school, but charged the school twice the rent amount to use half of the building while leasing the rest of the building to a tenant who had “a close familial relationship” with Glasrud at a significantly discounted rent. The school paid approximately $700,000 more than what Glasrud’s fake company paid for the rent, according to charges documents.
Another scheme involved the schools contracting with a different fake business for $265,000 in learning solutions in 2009 and 2010, a large majority of which Glasrud used to pay down his personal credit line, according to charging documents. He also transferred $50,000 into his personal bank account and spent $16,000 on personal items, including $4,000 spent at a casino in Las Vegas, Nev.
Glasrud resigned from his position as the charter schools’ head administrator in August 2014 after the FBI raided the Southwest Learning Center Schools headquarters and state auditors released a report about conflicts of interest, according to the Albuquerque Journal.
He was hired by the Bloomfield School District on Aug. 8, 2016, according to human resources director Debbie Hernandez.
Glasrud is listed as a Bloomfield High School special education teacher on the school’s website, but he resigned on Oct. 20, according to Hernandez.
Glasrud entered a guilty plea to his charges in an agreement that recommends a prison term of between four years, and five years and three months, according to the press release. He also will be required to pay restitution, the amount of which will be determined by the court. He was released under pretrial supervision and other conditions of release, and his sentencing date has not been scheduled.
Megan Petersen covers business and education for The Daily Times. Reach her at 505-564-4621.