Saturday, September 12, 2009

Two Dekalb School Officials Suspended For Test Fraud

Atlanta, GA
The Georgia Professional Standards Commission suspended two Dekalb County School officials on Thursday.

Former Atherton Elementary School principal James Berry was banned from working in Georgia's public schools for two years and former Atherton assistant principal Doretha Alexander was banned for one year for their roles in correcting student's answers on CRCT test forms in order to retain federal funding.

The Commission also approved formal investigations of at least eight other Georgia educators in connection with the statewide scandal. The scheme was uncovered when State officials noticed a high number of eraser marks on tests from Atherton and four other Georgia schools. The Governor's Office of Student Achievements preliminary audit results revealed that someone deliberately changed students' answers on the 5th grade CRCT math re-test.

The state said the scores improved significantly by the changes. At Atherton, the state found on average, answers were altered 21 times per student, the majority of the changes making them correct.

“The evidence presented was both compelling and troubling to me as superintendent of the DeKalb County School System. I assure you I am moving with great speed to address this matter internally.”, said DeKalb County school superintendent, Dr. Crawford Lewis.

Berry and Alexander were also arrested in connection with the incident and face criminal charges including altering public documents.

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