Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Don't Get Caught Up Crap Creek: SFUSD Investigates Addresses

Recently, a friend who lives outside of SF idly wondered if she should have used her mother-in-law's address to try to get her child into Alice Fong Yu.  I told her that since AFY is in high demand, even if she'd gotten in, there was a good chance that her address would have been checked, her child kicked out of AFY, and she would have been up crap creek a week into the school year.

OK, I didn't say crap creek.

One reason SFUSD switched to the new lottery system is because addresses are easier to verify than things like mother's educational level or race. In early 2011, SFUSD posted a position called "Address Fraud Investigator."  The 2012-2013 and 2013-14 SFUSD budgets allocated $37,000 to Address Fraud Investigation, on page 210 of the SFUSD Central Office budget.

Presumably the investigator and SFUSD have gotten more savvy about uncovering address fraud with each school year since 2011.   Last fall, another K-files blogger told me that her child's class at Clarendon had 6 missing children at the start of school. She'd heard that 4 were kindergarteners who were not allowed to enroll because of address fraud.

The first part of the Address Fraud Investigator job description is below for those want to know more about how SFUSD investigates student addresses. The full link is here.

Round 1 applications can be revised up to the deadline on 1/21.

Department of Human Resources

Address Fraud Investigator,SFUSD (#2963) 

$0.00-$0.00 Hourly / $0.00-$0.00 Monthly / $0.00-$0.00 Yearly 

Under general supervision, manages and conducts address verification checks for new SFUSD student applicants, transitioning and randomly-selected students; manages an on-going investigative caseload related to verifying or disputing residency claims for the purpose of school enrollment; and assists in the development and/or maintenance of an investigative case management program.  
Distinguishing Features
This classification is specific to the San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) because of the nature of the work which is investigating school-related issues.
Supervision Exercised
SUPERVISION EXERCISED: This class does not supervise other professional employees, but may coordinate the work of clerical/technical personnel.
Examples of Important and Essential Duties
1. Manages an investigative caseload.  Notifies parents/guardians of the opening of an investigation, and investigation results; assigns case numbers; documents and tracks actions taken; ensures documentation is on file; maintains summary notes; monitors and responds to hotline messages; produces reports as required; and identifies follow-up actions as appropriate.
2. Coordinates and conducts the preliminary verification process through Internet searches, property ownership records, phone number listings, and other public records.
3. Coordinates and conducts field investigations through personal calls, interviews, school and home visits, professional surveillance, and attendance record checking.  Randomly checks transitioning students’ addresses, and verifies their change of address claims.
4. Gathers and analyzes data; and determines the standard of evidence for reasonable suspicion and probable cause.
5. Collects, compiles, preserves, and analyzes evidence; and prepares written reports for follow-up and notification letters.
6. Acts as liaison with SFUSD’s Legal Office, District Attorney, or City Attorney; prepares and engages in additional investigative action as needed; pursues criminal or civil prosecution or punitive damages, as appropriate; and establishes partnerships with City agencies, and residential utility and service providers to verify address claims.
7. Conducts trainings related to address fraud investigations for staff.

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