Authorities in Boston are investigating a 32-year-old woman who allegedly enrolled in multiple area high schools over the last year in what one superintendent called “a case of extremely sophisticated fraud.”
The unnamed woman’s reported scheme unraveled on June 14, when a man claiming to be her father told administrators at English High School in Jamaica Plain that he was withdrawing his daughter and enrolling her at St. Columbkille School due to bullying, the Boston Herald said.
Officials were confused, because the student had only enrolled at English High School the previous week, and suspected possible custodial issues between the student’s parents, a police report obtained by the outlet explained.
“Concerned there may be some sort of custodial issue with the parents, the school began to ask from the district all of the enrollment paperwork,” the report continued.
Some digging in the student’s file revealed a name for a social worker with the Department of Children and Families, but an administrator later learned that no one by that name worked there.
The investigation subsequently revealed that the woman — who is allegedly 32 years old — used pseudonyms to enroll at Jeremiah E. Burke High School, in Dorchester, and Brighton High School during the 2022-23 school year, the outlet said.
“I am deeply troubled that an adult would breach the trust of our school communities by posing as a student. This appears to be a case of extremely sophisticated fraud,” district Superintendent Mary Skipper said in a statement, per MassLive.
While she was attending the schools, the woman was also reportedly working as a DCF social worker, WCVB reported.
“She definitely didn’t look 32,” one English High School student told the outlet shortly after news of the scandal broke.
“I thought she was just a normal student,” another added.
“I didn’t know she was 32…older than the teacher.
“She was cool, she was a cool person.”
It is unclear if the man who claimed to be the woman’s father is actually related to her.
As the investigation is ongoing, the woman is said to be receiving mental health treatment, WCVB said.