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Baltimore Schools Chief Vows Cheating Crackdown

BALTIMORE (WJZ) –The head of Baltimore City schools vows to crack down on cheating after a test tampering scandal. Now parents are having their say.

Mike Hellgren has their message to educators.

Many parents are outraged over the cheating scandal involving two Baltimore city schools: Fort Worthington and Abbottston elementary schools, where state investigators noted a large number of erasure marks on Maryland assessment tests, changed answers, and at Fort Worthington, they also found altered attendance records.

Three of Ethel Smithson’s children attend Fort Worthington.

“It’s wrong,” Smithson said. “If they’re changing the answers, that means they’re not teaching our children.”

“The school is out of control.  You hear me.  It’s out of control.” 

While some parents are satisfied with Fort Worthington, “I see pretty good changes in the school,” said Jermel Miles, parent.

Even those within their ranks believe the cheating scandal is shortchanging their kids “because you don’t know what they’re capable of doing if you’re changing the answers,” said Tiffany Witherspoon, parent. 

This is the second cheating scandal in city schools in the past year.

Test results carry high stakes for administrators and teachers. The system has spent almost $ 400,000 on test monitors in every school.

“It is not tolerated,” said Dr. Andres Alonso, city schools’ CEO. “It is not going to be tolerated.  The consequences will be dire.”

Even the students know cheating is wrong.

“It’s bad for you, and if you cheat, you might go back to the same grade you were in already,” said Cherice Mims, Fort Worthington student. 

That’s a lesson some staff apparently are learning the hard way.

The state gets about 200 complaints of cheating every year.

More from Mike Hellgren
Comments

One Comment

  1. POOR WHITE TRASH says:

    So he will fire himself???????

  2. SMH says:

    400,000.00 to keep the people teaching our kids honest. Positively Shameful! I’m sure there are many other ways that money could be put to use that would be more beneficial to the children

  3. Sylvan Finkelstein says:

    ALONSO YOU “VOW” TO GET TOTHE HEART OF THIS CORRUPTION YOU SOUND
    JUST LIKE THAT LADY WHO IS THE MAYOR..SHE VOW”S TO CLEAN UP THE HARBOR..GOOD LUCK WITH THAT AS WELL CLEANING UP YOUR CORRUPTION IN THE SCHOOL SYSTEM…..LOL

  4. sierra says:

    Who care’s…Worst schools in the country…

  5. TomKnows says:

    Even if schools aren’t cheating, how accurate is the scoring? Who is scoring these tests?

    http://jaxkidsmatter.blogspot.com/2011/04/who-is-scoring-all-these-standardized.html

    Read Todd Farley’s “Making the Grade” and other things he has published.

    We put far too much into these tests.

  6. Integrity............Honesty.....Solutions says:

    If Dr. Alonso wants to cut down on unethical practices in schools, he needs to create a hotline for teachers to report concerns. Everyone is concerned about their job so they try to mind their business. Others feel like no one will listen to them and they will be looked at as a trouble-maker. A teacher reporting hotline will empower teachers to inform North Avenue when something looks or feels wrong.
    Case and Point: John Eager Howard’s former principal was removed for unethical practices. A managing principal was assigned to the school. This managing principal wants to appointed to the school. To ensure this appointment she created her own selection panel. Is that possible? Can you create a panel of your peers to select you? Why not include everyone? After concerns were raised, a “vote” was taken……..the same people are on the panel? It will be interesting to see what happens at this school.

  7. PAUL E. MICELLI says:

    HOW MUCH MONEY DID THIS REALLY COST? THE COST OF EDUCATING ALL THOSE CHILDREN FOR WHAT, SO TESTS CAN BE CHEATED AND RESULTS LOOKING FAVORABLE FOR THE TEACHERS? I THINK THE TEACHING REQUIREMENTS FOR THE EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM NEEDS TO BE LOOKED AT VERY CAREFULLY. STOP WASTING TAXPAYERS MONIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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