The DeKalb County School System intends to fire an assistant principal who was caught in the middle of a statewide test tampering scandal in June, a district spokesman said.
The school district sent a letter to former Atherton Elementary School Assistant Principal Doretha Alexander as notification of her firing Aug. 13. She can appeal the termination. Alexander could not be reached for comment.
When results of a state inquiry into test tampering revealed Atherton Elementary’s test tampering, the school’s principal, James Berry, resigned, and Alexander was reassigned within the system.
The probe, performed by the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement, looked at the number of times a wrong answer on a math test scorecard was erased and replaced with the correct answer. The CRCT test is given to students in grades one through eight statewide and designed to measure how well students at each grade level have learned the state curriculum.
The governor’s office looked at a summer retest of the exam’s math section in 2008 – the first year schools were allowed to use their retest scores to determine whether they would make Adequate Yearly Progress, a federal designation under the No Child Left Behind Act.
Of the four Atlanta-area schools named, Atherton Elementary’s tampering was the most severe. The state looked at 32 students’ tests and determined someone changed wrong answers on a student’s test to the right one an average of 15.19 times, according to the state report. Atlanta’s Deerwood Academy had a 3.44 average number of changes.
No teachers or students were involved in test tampering, deputy superintendent Robert Moseley said.
Berry and Alexander also face criminal prosecution. They were arrested in June and charged with falsifying state documents, which could earn each between two and 10 years in jail.