In and outs of the political campaigns, focusing on Michigan and Lansing, Tim Skubick will report regularly throughout the primary and then general election campaigns.
Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Atlanta Cheating Here?
The head of the secondary school principals association does not see the immediate need for new safeguards against teacher/student cheating on proficiency exams.
Jim Ballard says at the high school level the administration of the ACT exam is done under "extremely guarded" safeguards but in the wake of the scandal in Atlanta, G.A. allegedly involving more than 150 school personnel, Ballard says the Michigan situation should be monitored and if an Atlanta-type situation arose, "we would have to do something about it."
But for now he adds, "I don't think we need new laws at this time."
"Ethics is still an important part of being an educator," he reflects and everyone knows that "cheating is wrong." Having said that however, now the stakes are even higher in that instructors, starting next year, will be evaluated based on the improvement in test scores by their students.
Rep. Bill Rogers (R-Brighton) says he understands human nature and the temptation to cheat especially when your job is on the line. "This is a profession. The temptation is there, but I certainly hope" it does not occur. He asserts that lawmakers want to address the issue of "teaching to the test" and adds, "We want to get away from that," but as long as the federal program No Child Left Behind remains on the books with a demand for 100% proficiency by 2014 in all schools, this will be a challenge for everyone, he concludes.