I'm compelled to define it because it's so rare today. A long-term investigation is required to show an emerging pattern of systemic problems, not just one isolated incident affecting one individual.
Digging into a sensitive subject, especially one that key people would rather keep secret, doesn't earn you many friends.
In fact, you might be threatened, harassed, or ignored.
I'm reminded of the story of how Harry Markopolos, a little-known number cruncher from a Boston equity derivatives firm, and his investigative team uncovered Bernie Madoff's scam years before it made headlines, and how they desperately tried to warn the government, the industry, and the financial press.
Markopolos was unheeded for seven years, while Madoff scammed hundreds of millions from his unwitting victims.
On Monday, I revealed exclusively on this blog that the Grand Traverse Academy's management company head, Mark Noss, made monthly $12,500 payments to disgraced former charter school manager Steven Ingersoll.
It's likely that after next week's sentencing hearing, we may learn that's just the tip of the money iceberg.
So, will Noss keep his management deal?
And will the Grand Traverse Academy allow Noss and his MDN Development, LLC to proceed with its deal to construct a building on the Traverse City charter school's grounds — and lease it back to the school at $30,000 per month?
It's April 1st, but I'm not a fool.
And next week, I will be debuting a new, even more shocking, exposé.
Stay tuned. As Lake Superior State University's Charter Office head, Chris Oshelski said, it is going to get interesting.