LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The 8 News Now I-Team has learned that a principal and teacher accused in a theft ring at a Las Vegas charter school had been hired to work in other schools. 

Victoria Welling and Christopher Olmstead were both fired from Legacy Traditional Schools’ southwest campus while they were being investigated late last year.

Welling was hired by the Clark County School District to begin working at Advanced Technologies Academy, also known as A-Tech, in July. 

A CCSD spokesman told the I-Team that Welling informed the district that she would no longer work for them within the past week.

Olmstead was employed by the York School District in South Carolina beginning in January of this year, according to Public Information Officer Tim Cooper. 

Before learning of this situation, Mr. Olmstead’s employment for the next school year was pending receiving teaching certification from the SC Department of Education.  At this time we have not received that certification.

Tim Cooper, York School District in South Carolina, Public Information Officer

No teaching license appeared on the SC Department of Education website as of Tuesday. 

Cooper said Olmstead signed a Letter of Employment in January 2022, which allows for time for certifications to transfer between states, and there are rules from the SC Department of Education that allows for this. 

Both Welling and Olmstead have active teaching licenses in the state of Nevada.

CCSD and the York School District told the I-Team that background checks were done, and Welling and Olmstead passed.  Both had been hired at the new jobs before they were charged in July.

Legacy Traditional Schools southwest Las Vegas campus (KLAS)

A spokesman for Legacy Traditional Schools sent the I-Team the following email.

Legacy Traditional Schools has a reference policy that only provides dates of employment and title for current and former employees

Legacy Traditional Schools statement

Multiple teachers at the Legacy Traditional School’s southwest Las Vegas campus were part of a conspiracy to steal funding from COVID-19 dollars, according to the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. 

Former teachers Christopher Olmstead (left), Andrea Fuentes-Soto (center), and former principal Victoria Welling (right) all worked at Legacy Traditional Schools’ southwest Las Vegas campus before being fired. (Credit: LVMPD)

Detectives said that a guideline allowed for one teacher to receive a grant of up to $954 for a classroom project. 

Instead, the detectives said multiple teachers created fake names to buy themselves items like televisions, drones, homeware, video games, and more.  Welling is accused of approving fraudulent applications.

According to the Clark County District Attorney’s office, Olmstead and teacher Andrea Fuentes-Soto are accused of stealing the most. 

Both made their first appearances in Las Vegas Justice Court on Monday. They face four charges each including felonies for theft and conspiracy. 

Their defense attorneys argued that they had no criminal histories and strong ties to the community. 

Judge Suzan Baucum scolded them and set bond at nearly $154,000, the amount which police said was stolen through the alleged scheme. 

“The proof is evident and the presumption is great that these crimes were committed,” Judge Baucum said.

As of Tuesday evening, Olmstead and Fuentes-Soto remained at the Clark County Detention Center.

Welling made her first court appearance on Thursday and faces six charges including felonies for theft and conspiracy. 

Her defense attorney also pointed out that she had no criminal history and strong ties to the community. 

Welling’s bail was also set at the amount which police said was stolen.  Records show that she posted bond and was released from jail the following day.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Wednesday, July 20.

Olmstead had also been employed as a summer employee at the YMCA of Southern Nevada.

A spokesman from the YMCA sent the following statement to the I-Team.

We are aware that one of our former summer employees, Christopher Olmstead was named in an investigation into the misappropriation of teacher grant funds garnered through his employment at a local charter school. 

This employee did not have any control of grant funds at the Y, and the Y is not part of the investigation. However, as the nation’s leading charity focused on youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility, we stand firm on our commitment to upholding core values of honesty, caring, respect, and responsibility. 

Moreover, as an organization that relies heavily on the generosity of others to fuel meaningful community impact, we take seriously our role in being positive stewards of donor funding.

For generations, we have exceeded industry standard fiscal policies and maintained public transparency and trust. In this spirit, the Y and named employee severed our relationship.

YMCA statement

Legacy Traditional School previously sent a statement informing the I-Team that a total of four employees were fired, including the three defendants. The full statement HERE.

The State Public Charter School Authority oversees charter schools in Nevada.  The I-Team reached out about the allegations on Tuesday and received the following statement.

The State Public Charter School Authority has been in touch with the Nevada Department of Education, the school, and DonorsChoose regarding the allegations at Legacy Traditional’s Southwest Campus. We are cooperating with local authorities on their investigation.

The State Public Charter School Authority

DonorsChoose.org is the website hired by the Department of Education to dole out the funding.