Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

District rescinded passing grades on suspicious Clearwater High test scores

The Pinellas County School District uncovered a pattern of suspicious changes to test scores of struggling students enrolled in computer-based credit recovery courses at Clearwater High School late last year.

The testing irregularities — the subject of a WFTS-Ch. 28 report that aired Friday night — included cases of a teacher or teachers changing failing scores to passing scores on tests that allow students to recoup lost credit.

But school administrators found no evidence that any of the altered test scores made it far enough through the district's grading system to boost a student's chances of graduating, district spokeswoman Lisa Wolf said.

In its report Friday, WFTS cited internal district documents that show one student failed a test, earning 26 of 100 possible points. That student's grade was then changed to an 80, the lowest possible passing score.

Wolf said similar tests were uncovered and considered suspicious during a district review in spring 2015. She said the number of students whose grades were affected was not immediately available Friday.

Lax oversight of the computer system at the school level made it difficult for the district to learn much more about the changes, Wolf said. She said multiple teachers at Clearwater High were accessing the system using the same login information.

Schools now require teachers to use unique login information when accessing GradPoint, the system of computer courses students use to make up lost class credit.

Wolf said school officials first raised concerns after a number of students at Clearwater High had their grades dismissed based on irregularities caught by staff. The findings of the district's internal investigation came months before superintendent Mike Grego and other top administrators touted progress on the school system's graduation rate.

Clearwater High's graduation rate for all students climbed from 73 percent to 87 percent between spring 2011 and spring 2015.

Data reporter Nathaniel Lash contributed to this report.

District rescinded passing grades on suspicious Clearwater High test scores 02/26/16 [Last modified: Friday, February 26, 2016 9:55pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. 5 things to know before Tampa Bay Comic Con this weekend

    Events

    Tampa Bay Comic Con returns to the Tampa Convention Center this weekend, expected to attract more than 55,000 like-minded nerds mingling with cosplayers, celebrities, artists and sellers of comic books and collectibles.

    Surrounded by the bridesmaids dressed as Disney princesses and groomsmen dressed as Marvel superheroes, Gwen Walter of Venice, Fla., kisses her husband, Shawn Walter, also of Venice, after their wedding ceremony on day two of the 2016 Tampa Bay Comic Con in the Tampa Convention Center on August 6, 2016. The pair got engaged at Megacon 2015 and were married wearing "Nightmare Before Christmas"-themed costumes. Two different couples were married in Room 24 on the second day of the Tampa Bay Comic Con 2016. ANDRES LEIVA   |   Times
  2. White House tensions catch fire with Scaramucci interviews (w/video)

    National

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump's new communications director exploded the smoldering tensions at the White House into a full-fledged conflagration Thursday, angrily daring Trump's chief of …

    White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci gestures as he answers a question during a press briefing in the Brady Press Briefing room of the White House in Washington on July 21, 2017. Scaramucci offered newsroom leaders a test on Thursday. They needed to decide whether to fully use the obscenities relied on by Scaramucci to describe fellow White House aides or talk around them. [Associated Press]
  3. Forecast: Drier pattern ending in Tampa Bay as front brings building rain chances throughout weekend

    Weather

    The drier, hot weather pattern across Tampa Bay will remain in place Friday before rain chances start to ramp up yet again through the weekend and into next week.

    Tampa Bay's 7 day forecast. [WTSP]
  4. Police investigating death of child in Largo

    Accidents

    LARGO — An investigation is underway into the death of a child Thursday night at a mobile home park and a 25-year-old man has been named as a suspect, the Largo Police Department said.

  5. Goodbye, iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle: Apple kills products as music moves to phones

    Science

    SAN FRANCISCO — The iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle have played their final notes for Apple.

    An iPod, iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle are displayed at an Apple store in New York in 2015. The company discontinued sales of the iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle on Thursday, July 27, 2017, in a move reflecting the waning popularity of the devices in an era when most people store or stream their tunes on smartphones. [Associated Press]