Some Central Virginia teachers, principals cheating on SOL tests

RICHMOND, Va. – While cheating often brings to mind students copying from a classmate or maybe having answers written on their hands, but a CBS 6 investigation found teachers– and even principals in Central Virginia — cheating on the Standards of Learning (SOL) tests.

There have been more than 30 cases over the past five years where students have been forced to retake the SOLs in Chesterfield, Henrico, and Richmond as a result of cheating by teachers and administrators.

Cosby High School student Gage Langlais is one of those students.

He crammed people, places and time period into his brain for his World History SOL test in May, only to learn he would have to retake the test.

“I was kind of in shock, like, I worked so hard to clear this test, why do I have to take it again,” Langlais said.

 

According to documents obtained from the state, Langlais and 92 of his fellow students had to retake the exam because his teacher was giving out hints.

“I never heard her do anything like that,” Langlais said.

When we showed Langlais’s father, Luc Langlais, those documents, he expressed surprise and wondered why it would happen.

“What’s the motive? To look good? Are they getting pressure from their administrations?” Luc Langlais asked.

Since 2010, the state ordered retests after investigations into cheating by teachers, principals and SOL proctors two times in Chesterfield, eight times in Richmond, and 24 times in Henrico.

The principal at Ginter Park Elementary School in Richmond was placed on indefinite administrative leave in 2011 for changing the answers of at least one student.

A principal at Montrose Elementary School in Henrico actually took the SOL for an absent student, and then changed that student’s attendance record, according to state records.

“The document speaks for itself,” said Henrico County School spokesperson Andy Jenks.

“Oh, absolutely, any testing irregularity concerns us,” Jenks said when asked if school’s are concerned over the documents.

In another case at Highland Springs High School in Henrico, a geometry teacher admitted giving students the correct answers.

We showed the investigation to Highland Springs student Donald Hagans.

“I didn’t think it would happen at Highland Springs of all schools…that’s crazy,” Hagans said.

SOLs

We asked Jenks why the Henrico School system had the highest number of cheating instances that led to re-testing investigated by the state.

“I don’t know if there is a concrete answer to that, I think the relatively high numbers are a reflection of our willingness to report these findings to the state; to not make any excuses for what takes place,” Jenks said.

Dr. Bill Bosher, a former Henrico and Chesterfield Superintendent who was the state’s top educator when the SOLs were created in the 1998, said schools can lose accreditation if students do not perform well on the tests.

“If people are placing undue pressure, that needs to be addressed, but to eliminate the pressure is to eliminate the accountability,” Bosher said.

Jenks said expectations are reasonable.

“Would a teacher be fired if not enough students were passing the SOL?” Hipolit asked Jenks.

“No, no –that’s no, the answer to that is no,” Jenks said.

If someone is caught cheating Virginia law allows for a teacher or administrator’s license to be taken away for cheating, but the state told us just 10 people in the entire state have ever had their license revoked or suspended for testing violations.

Disciplinary action is typically left up to the individual school system.

We asked Jenks if Henrico County Public Schools have ever fired someone for cheating.

“I can’t say for sure because we’re talking about what’s getting into, what could be extrapolated, what could be a personnel matter connected to a certain individual — but it’s not out of the realm of possibilities,” Jenks said.

While Henrico, Chesterfield and Richmond said they are legally unable to talk about specific cases, state records show Langlais’ teacher left Cosby, which is a decision he hopes will mean no more re-tests in the future.

“It should be about what we learned and the teacher should have no part,” Langlais said.

We spoke with some teachers who wanted to remain anonymous when discussing what they felt could be causing teachers and principals to cheat.

They told me there is extreme pressure for kids to perform well on the SOLs and everything centers on those tests.

One teacher even told us the “pressure is so great that despite what you do and how good you are at it, it’s all about that one day [SOL testing day].”

32 comments

  • manalishi

    Of course they cheat. It’s impossible to achieve any “standard of learning” with indoctrination as the baseline of mediocrity. Furthermore, it’s impossible to effective teach democrat larvae that were raised by democrats.

  • Ryan

    The tests are above and beyond overrated. Public education to be exact is overrated in America. In the past all you needed was a high school diploma, but now jobs are insisting on college diplomas and higher. These tests aren’t about the student at all, it’s about the teacher and their individual teaching methods. The only thing the student is required is to pass to be able to receive that mediocre diploma to spend 4+ years in more school. Life has cheaters, and those who cheat are smart because they know that their are more important things to be doing.

    • joey

      yep, very tryue! its all about pumping money into the economy. so they make high cost college mandatory for jobs that you dont need college for. a lot of these office jobs that require a college degree and you dont really need it. then you see all of these bogus colleges/univerisities. (ecpi, strayer, icdc college, and online colleges collecting all that student loan money. its just all about money, not educating people.

    • manalishi

      One can only assume that you girls met in juvi and the rest is LGBT history. Your life must be bliss since the court allowed you to marry.

  • Robbie

    Listen up Republican nut jobs. Google George Bush funny sayings and enjoy. He is the poster child for his “no child left behind” program. It has really got to bother you Republican clowns that Bush was unable to gracefully speak the English language. Whereas Obama’s ability to lead this country, speak with such grace and intelligence angers you Republican losers. I have criticized African American leaders for their 60’s thinking but you know, Republicans still think the blacks should be in the fields. Race is the reason Republicans won’t give the man his due.

    • manalishi

      Bush has been gone for 5+ years dumba**. Your idol Barry Soertoro is hasn’t earned his due. “chump” loser.

      • joey

        how long bush has been gone doesnt matter. the point is you have the 43 other presidents to blame for where we are today…not someone who has been in office for 6 years of the history of the country and on top of that came in on a recession. instead of calling people names, speak your opinion eloquently if you can. for some reason i dont think youre racist but i cant help to see the way you defend racist like bo, mo fiscal and clayton and go after those who arent one sided.

      • manalishi

        ” speak your opinion eloquently if you can. ” I prefer to stick to facts as opposed to opinion. At six years, we no longer have a productive relationship with ANY ally except radical islamists. The so called “recovery” is based heavily on low paying jobs due to market competitiveness (taxes), and pertaining to this article, nobody seems to want a legitimate educational standard which is precisely why k-12 academia is steadily slipping into the abyss compared to the rest of the world. Or shall we touch base in the indoctrination of our students especially at early ages? I’m not certain exactly what the current education (indoctrination) is designed to achieve, but obviously actual education for intellectual advancement of a nation as a whole is not on the table.

        Racism is a laughable joke these days. I contend and have witnessed that the vast majority of racial tensions in this country revolve around 2 contants. #1 is economics, and #2 is propaganda. The repair of either aspect is not part of Barry Soertoro’s agenda.

      • Robbie

        Look at the bloopers ManiJethroBodineishi! How your savior got out of the 6th grade is beyond me. He makes Obama look like Einstein. Hell, Bush even makes you look like the Limbaugh puffer you are.

  • Hang 10

    SOLs are bogus, testing is a tool to bypass real learning.
    Do students learn to think critically? No
    Our public school system is a MESS.

  • RPS

    I hate that the conversation has turned to a bunch of nonsense and lambasting. The story at hand should be the subject.

    Cheating is real and it happens at my school in RPS. We are too afraid to speak about it, however, and administration is too afraid to do anything about it.

    Corrupt teachers have corrupt proctors in their rooms and that’s all they need to assist students who are too delighted to tell anyone that their teachers are cheating.

    One student told me exactly what their teacher had done to help him on his test.

    • manalishi

      What i want to see made public is exactly how many teachers in VA (broken down into municipalities) are operating on emergency waivers.

      • Clayton Bigsby

        That data is guarded like Lerners emails. If this were happening in Short Pump it would make national headlines, with names and photos of the offenders. However, blacks are protected at all cost.

      • Robbie

        Obama spanked the slobs the out of touch Republican party ran against him. History will show Obama saved this country without the Republican party offering him any help. It will also show the Republican party fought him on everything he tried to do yet he still rallied the stock market, saved the economy and will cause many more Republicans lose their jobs in elections to come.

  • joey

    this isnt about blacks getting cheated for. nowhere does it say who the studens were that the teachers were doing this for. by the way iq is a white man’s test. black culture differs in the way they think. blacks people have a much higher level of common sense than whites. the economics that poor black people learn is great. black drug dealers have a lot of business sense. they dont make all the money they make without it. think about how black elders use to cook meals and budget with little. making little much. white people kill themselves in those predicaments. black women 50 plus years ago could barely count or read but could cook delicious meals the same way everytime using the palm of their hands for measurements. in no way am i saying all black people are drug dealers or poor but im only talking about those black people in particular because im sure those are the ones you are speaking of. you are sad and shallow. just racist and im sad for you.

  • BO

    They like tough talking guys like you in prison.Not being able to form sentences correctly advances your chance of meeting your destiny.

  • Pam

    @ dumb a$$ Clayton, had you stayed in school you would know that short pump is A a part of Henrico, dumb a$$. You need to sit in the class with these kids.

      • tim

        your racist A$$ just think its mostly black schools. Coming up with your own ish in your sick mind. The article says henrico, chesterfield, city of richmond—-CENTRAL VIRGINIA…..what part of that DONT you understand????

  • Robbie

    Did you Republican nut jobs catch Bill O’Reilly last night. The night before he wanted war with Iran, Iraq and Russia. Last night he was against war but now favors more sanctions on Russia. He went on to say that the EU, especially France was still doing business with Russia. In other words, he flip flopped. Losers at Faux, Republican party losers…a win win situation for the democratic party.

      • Robbie

        Manidueshbagilishi…you have no agenda! You have no platform! You have no ideas of your own but what you do have is your blow up George Bush doll that when you pull its string…it tells you that you are the best Limbaugh puffer ever. You sad pitiful little boy. I asked you not to talk about my parents but I can see that I am getting to you and your pathetic existence. I’m loving it little boy!

      • manalishi

        That’s right princess, that’s why yo daddy abandoned you. You still think you can set the rules. Just keep sippin from Barry Soertoros straw,,,,”chump”.

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