Just when you think you have heard everything that can go wrong in the charter industry, along comes a story about the Detroit Community Schools, a charter that is in chaos. Not because of its 650 students, but because of the adults who are allegedly upin charge.

Bay Mills Community College, the authorizer for the charter, fired the chief administrative officer, but she refuses to leave.

“Former Detroit City Councilwoman Sharon McPhail was fired Monday as the chief administrative officer of a troubled Detroit charter school, but she’s refusing to leave.

“McPhail was terminated by Bay Mills Community College, the authorizer for Detroit Community Schools.

“She’s not cooperating,” said Tom Shields, the spokesman for the college. “She is saying Bay Mills has no legal grounds” to fire her.

“Consequently, Shields said, “Bay Mills will be seeking a court order to have her removed.”

“McPhail’s firing is among a series of steps the college is taking to address issues caused by McPhail’s failure to maintain the proper school administrative certification by the state.

The college also announced that the school board has been temporarily suspended. And a conservator has been appointed to oversee the school.

“The Free Press in September reported that for the second time in two years, the Michigan Department of Education had fined the school because McPhail lacked proper certification. District leaders in Michigan must have an administrative certification, which requires either a master’s degree or completion of credit hours toward a master’s degree.

”The MDE has fined the school more than $200,000. Officials said at the time of the Free Press report that the department had collected $100,188 from the school, but it still owed $122,387 in fines.”

In addition to administrative turmoil, the school is in academic distress:

“Detroit Community Schools, which opened in 1997, serves about 650 students in grades K-12. Students at the school have struggled academically: Just 7 percent of the school’s elementary and middle school students are proficient in all subjects on the Michigan Student Test of Educational Progress, compared with 40 percent statewide, according to data on http://www.mischooldata.org. At the high school, 22 percent were proficient in all subjects, compared with 40 percent statewide.”

Just to add a twist of the bizarre:

“In addition to her stint as a city councilwoman, McPhail served as general counsel for former mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, who is serving a 28-year prison sentence for federal corruption crimes.

“McPhail, who has run for Detroit mayor before, was a frequent foe of Kilpatrick’s until shortly before she was hired as his counsel in 2006. In 2003 — when she was on the council — she accused Kilpatrick of being behind the tampering of the electric back massager on her chair, calling him a thug and bully and saying the tampering was in retaliation for her refusing to back a deal pushed by Kilpatrick’s administration. Though it was reported by multiple news outlets at the time — and investigated by police — she denied ever making the claim during a radio interview in 2008.”