Mother who put kids in wrong school released from jail early
Ohio mother Kelley Williams-Bolar is led off to jail after her conviction last week.
January 27th, 2011
11:06 AM ET

Mother who put kids in wrong school released from jail early

An Ohio woman who was jailed for tampering with records to get her children into a better school district has been released from jail a day early, according to a local newspaper.

Kelley Williams-Bolar left the Summit County Jail on Wednesday, having served nine days of her 10-day sentence, the Akron Beacon Journal reported.

Williams-Bolar, a single mother living in subsidized housing in Akron, used her father's address to register her two daughters in the high-achieving suburban Copley-Fairlawn school district.

Copley-Fairlawn said the improper registration cost it $30,000 in lost tuition and $6,000 in investigative costs.

The case has drawn national media attention and outrage, much of it due to its racial undertones: Williams-Bolar is black, while the Copley-Fairlawn schools are predominantly white.

A Google search for Williams-Bolar's name turns up 131,000 results.

Williams-Bolar told CNN affiliate WEWS-TV in Cleveland that she plans to appeal her conviction. The local chapter of the Rev. Al Sharpton's National Action Network is trying to raise money to fund the appeal, the Beacon Journal reported.

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Filed under: Crime • Education • Justice • Ohio • Race • U.S.
soundoff (855 Responses)
  1. fineart

    When I was twelve y/o, my family moved from the inner city to the suburbs. I wasn't a scholar like my younger brothers were, but we all received an excellent education. There were about five or six African American students in the school system, with no Latinos, Asians or Indians. The resources for learning were endless with the added reward of learning from our European counterparts, what it means to have a good life. Good education, comfortable home, good paying job etc. I look back on the friends that I left behind in the inner city and simply.....shutter. The vast majority didn't have a chance at anything. Many got involved in illegal activities and were either incarcerated, made drugs and alcohol their preferred choice, or died at an early age. I can only guess it was to ease the pain of social injustice. I went on to a college education and great career. I still stay in contact with both city and suburban friends and it's fascinating to hear whats being said. Their experiences are like people from different countries. Both have so much to offer but will never get the chance to sit together and "iron out" the many things that make us great, as apposed to what separates us. The looser is The United States of America.

    January 28, 2011 at 5:12 am | Report abuse |
    • so funny

      I love how you spell out twelve , but abbreviated years old. You must be smart.

      January 28, 2011 at 7:14 am | Report abuse |
  2. James

    Illegal mexican aliens do this all the time and nobody seems to care. Let this lady put her kids where she wants. She is an American.

    January 28, 2011 at 6:09 am | Report abuse |
    • marshamarsha

      EXCELLENT point! Lets not forget Obamas speech about not wanting to "hurt" the illegal immigrant children who receive FREE education from us since you know the majority are NOT paying taxes, yet here we are throwing an AMERICAN in jail for lying about her school district?? It's like watching an episode of REALLY?? on SNL................

      January 28, 2011 at 7:07 am | Report abuse |
  3. James

    How come illegal aliens can put their kids in any of our schools they want but an American can't ?

    January 28, 2011 at 6:10 am | Report abuse |
    • JFH

      Because the Dems see them as potential voters.

      January 28, 2011 at 8:31 am | Report abuse |
  4. chchch

    What she did was wrong – ok – we all do wrong things. Should she be punished, well yes. Does it rise to a level of a felony – of course not. Should she have received jail time and a 10,000 dollar fine – resounding no. Did the prosecutor waste valuable resources on a trivial case and showed abuse of power – you bet. Was the 30,000 dollars demand reasonable that the Copely school district tried to impose – no. It was extortion that never would have been asked of a white family with means. They could have dis-enrolled the chidren and the matter would have ended. They knew full well that a person making just under 14 dollars an hour could not adequately defend herself in court and wanted to make an example of a "undesireable element." The worse offenders of school district lines are atheletes. I am willing to bet that the sports team was not investigated. Did the mother get a refund from her current school district for taxes paid and services not collected? Do people who pay property and school levy taxes, but have no children get a refund? Did the Copely district get any money based on head count for school attendance – I bet they did. I find the 30,000 dollar bill outrageous. The Copely school districts policy obvious intent is to keep "those" type of people out of their boundaries. This whole argument about "stealing" from the residents of Copely is absurd. Has this case, been a forum for a self righteous nut jobs and hate monger to spew their venom – sadly yes. Ohio and especially The Copely township must be the most awful place to live. I would not be part of their community if I had a golden invitation.

    January 28, 2011 at 6:12 am | Report abuse |
  5. Dave254

    A parent who actually CARES about their kids is SO UNUSUAL these days, so what do we do when one of them does something proactive to further their kid's education? We put them in jail,. of course.
    And what valuable lesson has been learned by the parent, and kids here? NEVER TRUST THE SYSTEM TO HELP YOU!

    January 28, 2011 at 6:14 am | Report abuse |
  6. Chris

    Something some of you may not know about this story. Allegedly, the mother had returned to school and was training to become a teacher. Now that she has been slapped with two felonies, she has absolutely no chance of ever being licensed as a teacher.

    Ask yourself the question: would this happen to a rich white lady? The answer is no. We would write that off as a mistake, maybe give her some community service, have her pay a fine. Slap on the wrist.

    Everybody here saying "Oh well she broke the law, she has to pay the price" is deluded. They've taken away this lady's opportunity to become a productive member of society, all because she is poor and black and because she wanted her kids to go to a school where she knows her kids are going to be given the education they deserve.

    The rich take from the poor and give nothing back. Welcome to the United States.

    January 28, 2011 at 6:29 am | Report abuse |
  7. Christine

    The authorities should be going after all the ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS and their kids that are in our schools instead! They are notorious for doing the exact same thing... And don't start calling me a racist, I live in a city that is 89% Hispanic and right on the U.S. / Mexico border, so I know first-hand what's happening.

    January 28, 2011 at 6:53 am | Report abuse |
    • KJBushway

      Wow its a change now its I am not a Racist my next door neighbors are mexican.
      You witness but you have no real knowledge.
      Trust me its not the kids or illegal immigrants that bring down the system its the state and the schools.
      I am not overly smart and I was able to sit in class and draw ships on paper and get B's. Teachers can get a far part of the blame.

      January 28, 2011 at 12:09 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Huh

    "A Google search for Williams-Bolar's name turns up 131,000 results." Relevence???????

    January 28, 2011 at 7:01 am | Report abuse |
  9. marshamarsha

    I would never ever think to punish someone for trying to better themselves or their kids. I commend her for caring about whats best for her kids and doing her best.

    January 28, 2011 at 7:12 am | Report abuse |
  10. coffegirl

    This is a CRIME, during the annual count day those children were counted for and therefore received funding for that district just for being there...Many cities have open enrollment for this purpose alone. Did anyone think that she had her kids going to this school so that her children could be taken care of by her father after school, another show of good parenting, rather than leaving her kids alone after school while she works her tail off. One sided bigots can't see beyond their own front door. It is sickening that she had to leave her children for 9 days and possibly affects her job for a non-violent crime, Drunk Drivers get out of jail quicker than that in most cases. Doing drugs is also a crime and yet the police can see the actual hobo on the road, stumbling around and not do anything about it. This is a DISCRACE!

    January 28, 2011 at 7:42 am | Report abuse |
  11. cpt

    Its about time. We give a free pass to illegal aliens who do this, but we're going to put one of our own in jail. That is not fair.

    January 28, 2011 at 7:42 am | Report abuse |
  12. Stacey

    Her children, being in the "better" all-white school, were noticed because of their color. That's obvious. Her conviction was way over the top; at most, her kids could have simply been made to attend their own district school. Someone clearly had it out for her; a neighborhood friend who was jealous or someone in the "fancy" district who could not mind their own business.

    January 28, 2011 at 7:42 am | Report abuse |
    • FC

      I would love to be a fly on the wall to see how many parents have pulled their children out of Copley High School since this aired?made news.
      75% of the kids at Copley High School live out of the Copley school district. This has been going on for years.
      They have now opened up a can of worms, let's see if the others are punished just as harsh, paraded down the jail house hall, in a prison suit in handcuffs and covered on every news station.
      This principal, superindent and anyone else involved, can kiss their jobs goodbye...(what goes around comes around) Look how the tables have turned, GOTCHA! I think it's simply horrible they took this much time to video tape this family for two years to make an example out of someone. Who even reported something like this; a jeolous, nosey parent who's child wasn't doing as good as this womens kids were...I'm sure!

      January 28, 2011 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
  13. ralph

    She tried to scam the system and got caught. It is a felony – end of story.

    January 28, 2011 at 7:50 am | Report abuse |
    • KJBushway

      Its a ridiculous felony. the amount of resources spent toward this is the crime.

      January 28, 2011 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Kellyn

    Are you kidding me? This is absolutely the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard. We used someone else's address when I was a kid just so that I could go to a decent public school because the schools for the district we fell under were not just awful, they were dangerous. I am thankful for having had the opportunity to attend school in a safe environment.

    January 28, 2011 at 7:53 am | Report abuse |
  15. coffegirl

    As I read these comments I am so happy to see that the majority of the comments are in this woman's defense. There are only a few, by comparison, that agree with this punishment...Kudos to the logical, kudos to the well rounded able to see the person this woman is and wants to be, and kudos to a single mother doing the best she can do to raise good children ON HER OWN. This woman is a hero, not a criminal. Open up all the districts to everyone once those that live there have their seats. There is no harm in trying to give the best education to our children and I seriously doubt taking her children to this school was convenient.

    January 28, 2011 at 7:54 am | Report abuse |
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