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Neil Bush's Firm Under Federal Scrutiny

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November 7, 2007 04:08 PM EST | AP

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WASHINGTON — The Education Department's inspector general says he will review whether federal money is inappropriately being spent on programs by a company founded by Neil Bush, the president's brother.

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a Washington-based watchdog group, called for the inquiry and released a letter this week from the department's inspector general, John Higgins Jr.

In it, Higgins said he would ask an assistant to examine the group's complaint.

The group contends school districts inappropriately are using federal dollars for Ignite! Learning Inc. programs. It says there is no proof the company's products are effective and claims the schools are using the products due to political considerations.

The company's president, Ken Leonard, said in a statement that Ignite! has not received any correspondence from the inspector general's office.

"Ignite! Learning has no knowledge of any customer that has procured our curriculum solutions through means which are other than completely ethical and in compliance with the typical guidelines of their various funding sources," Leonard said.

Ignite! sells a product it refers to as a Curriculum on Wheels, which comes with software to teach math, social studies and science and costs about $3,800 each, not including subscription costs.

Neil Bush is the chairman of the company, based in Austin, Texas.

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On the Net:

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Government: http://www.citizensforethics.org

Ignite! Learning: http://www.ignitelearning.com/