School deals with funding issues - WFLA News Channel 8

School deals with funding issues

Posted: Updated:
TAMPA, FL (WFLA) -

A longtime Tampa-based cosmetology school has lost a chunk of its staff over payment problems as it deals with funding issues.

Manhattan Hairstyling Academy has about three quarters of a million dollars in federal funding pending for the past few months, said Robert Valdez, Jr. , one of the school's owners.

About 85 percent of the school's funding comes from the federal government in the form of student loan and grant money, he said.

The issues date back to July, when the federal Department of Education changed the way it handles funding for the school, Valdez said. DOE used to pay as students signed up or hit a certain point in their schooling, but changed that method and instead wanted to group students together in "batches" every 30 days, he said.

The payment system is temporary, Valdez said, and DOE wants the school to make changes to certain processes and systems including entrance interviews and software.

Manhattan Hairstyling Academy is still waiting for its first "batch" worth about $250,000 and has another one representing more than $500,000 in aid ready to send DOE after that, he said.

Several former teachers and staff contacted 8 On Your Side about the situation, saying they were owed pay for time worked in recent months.

"It was very, very frustrating," said Caitlin Schwab, a former teacher at the Inverness campus.

Unable to afford to continue making the drive to work without getting paid, Schwab said she quit in early August.

Schwab says some of her paychecks bounced, and although the school paid some of what she was owed, she is still waiting for about $900.

Heather Adams says she worked at Manhattan as a contractor for 30 days this summer, and is owed about $1,900.

"I just kept thinking well as long as I'm doing the work then I'll be compensated for what I've done," Adams said.

Manhattan teachers and staff who contacted News Channel 8 have said they were told by management about the funding issue and possible delay in pay, but some couldn't afford to wait for things to resolve.

"I don't have the money to put in my gas tank to even go up there to work for a promise," Schwab said.

Asked about Manhattan, a spokeswoman for the Department of Education said last month that she could not comment because it was an "ongoing situation." This week, an email to that same spokeswoman prompted an automated response about the government shutdown.

  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Arcadia dog set on fire improving, could be released early

    Arcadia dog set on fire improving, could be released early

    Tuesday, April 1 2014 11:26 PM EDT2014-04-02 03:26:55 GMT
    "Hope" was doused with kerosene and set on fire. BluePearl Veterinary photo"Hope" was doused with kerosene and set on fire. BluePearl Veterinary photo
    A 1-year-old DeSoto County dog that was set on fire is improving and could be released from 24-hour care to a primary care veterinarian next week.
    A 1-year-old DeSoto County dog that was set on fire is improving and could be released from 24-hour care to a primary care veterinarian next week.
  • Restaurant Ratings: Most Violations April 7-13

    Restaurant Ratings: Most Violations April 7-13

    Saturday, April 19 2014 6:47 AM EDT2014-04-19 10:47:28 GMT
    We’ve gathered details about the Tampa Bay restaurants that received the most violations during inspections conducted from April 7 to 13, 2014.
    We’ve gathered details about the Tampa Bay restaurants that received the most violations during inspections conducted from April 7 to 13, 2014.
  • Knoxville woman finds body under deck during Easter egg hunt

    Knoxville woman finds body under deck during Easter egg hunt

    April 18, 2014 07:19 AM 2014-04-20 00:38:25 GMT
    A mother was shocked to discover the odor she'd smelled was a dead body underneath the deck of her Knoxville home.
    A mother was shocked to discover the odor she'd smelled was a dead body underneath the deck of her Knoxville home.
Powered by WorldNow

200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

Telephone: 813.228.8888
Fax: 813.225.2770
Email: news@wfla.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.