PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — After an FBI raid and a grand jury investigation, this week the PA Cyber Charter School Board fired four key administrators and its attorney.
But its new attorney, Robert Stewart, says the events are unrelated.
“The terminations that were done were done because of the administration’s desire to keep the school moving in a positive direction,” he said.
The government confirms that the Cyber School itself is not a target of its investigation but it does remain enmeshed.
Wednesday, KDKA-TV caught up with Stewart as he was summoned to the U.S. Attorney’s office downtown.
“I was in the U.S. Attorney’s office. I was there to deliver documents,” Stewart said. “We were complying with a subpoena.”
In July, the FBI raided not only the Cyber School offices — but those of a number of related entities created by the school’s founder Dr. Nick Trombetta.
The FBI and the U.S. Attorney are investigating whether Pennsylvania tax dollars were improperly funneled into organizations, including a consulting business called Avanti headquartered on a farm in Ohio.
Stewart said the firings mark a departure from Trombetta’s leadership.
“Absolutely. In fact, that’s precisely what the board wants to do – take it in a different direction after his retirement,” he said.