News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Levin Furniture

Meaden & Moore

Greater Akron Chamber


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Education


Investigation reveals Columbus schools rigged data and grades for years
Ohio Auditor David Yost says the real victims are the students
by WKSU's ANDY CHOW


Reporter
Andy Chow
 
Ohio Auditor David Yost believes the district's practices should lead to criminal charges.
Courtesy of Ohio Auditor of State
Download (WKSU Only)
In The Region:
An investigation into Columbus City Schools, Ohio's largest school district, documents years of rule-breaking in order to improve the district's state ranking. Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow has more on the practices that Ohio Auditor David Yost says should lead to criminal charges.
LISTEN: State Auditor David Yost reveals results of investigation into Columbus City Schools

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (2:35)


“This has been one of the most troubling things in the 14 years that I’ve been a public servant that I’ve ever come across," Ohio Auditor Dave Yost said as he revealed the results of his office’s special investigation into Columbus City Schools,

He said there was a top-down culture of data manipulation and employee intimidation. And his full report claims that top officials have been gaming the system for years in order to improve the district’s ranking.

One school administrator was accused of prodding teachers to change F’s to D’s.

Looking good at all costs
Yost said there was a more complex operation, starting in 2002, where a top administrator with the district would direct staff to withdraw poor-performing students, then re-enroll them. That way, a student’s test score would not be counted to the school’s overall performance.

“They wanted to look good. They wanted their performance measurements to look better than they did. They wanted to avoid the consequences that come from not doing a good job. And I sincerely and devoutly hope that they will have to answer your questions in a court of law.”

There could be bigger consequences for some of the higher officials, such as former Superintendent Gene Harris for example. Yost would not share any details but did say he will send a criminal referral to prosecutors as well as a referral to the Ohio Department of Education for license sanctions.

Who lost out?
In the end, Yost said he believes the real victims of the data scrubbing are the students.

“This is a situation where we have a generation of kids in Columbus Schools ... who were left behind – who didn’t get the resources or the attention or the opportunity that they were entitled to. And that’s because the adults cheated.”

As far as oversight is concerned, Yost said the Columbus school board could do a better job. He added that the Ohio Department of Education, which collects attendance records, mostly operates under the honor system. However, Yost said the department is working on developing better reporting procedures.

Lawmakers are looking closer
Republican State Rep. Gerald Stebelton from Lancaster is the chairman for the House Education committee. He said he wants to take a close look at the auditor’s report and decide whether legislative action is needed. He added that he finds the results disturbing when added to previous data problems in other school districts.

“This is a big issue, a huge issue, perhaps more important than anything else we do in education in this state this year or next year, too.”

Soon after the report was released, Columbus City Schools announced that several administrators would be fired for their roles in changing data.

Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook




Stories with Recent Comments

Canton's proposed Timken-McKinley school merger is drawing spirited debate
From a sports opinion Varsity would have a lot more talent to choose from So Im sure varsity sports would improve.Also Timkens name would be much more published...

Canton school board will decide whether to merge high schools
I really hope we can save those jobs, usually we try to cut budgets but the demand is still the same. Then we look bad a year or two after the descion is made. ...

FirstEnergy wants PUCO guarantees on nuclear and coal prices
Would just comment that the plant has admitted the following (as reporting in the Akron Beacon Journal): "The utility has said it may have difficulty keeping t...

Mozzarella's easy when you have a way with curd
Hello, Where can I get such a heater that you have? Does it hold temperature that you set? What brand and model is it? Thank you in advance!! :)

Pluto: A healthy LeBron James is the key for the rocky Cavs
It's time to back our Cleveland professional teams through thick and thin. I've seen management, players and coaches come and go and it hasn't changed a thing. ...

Legal marijuana group offers new details about ballot issue
Americans feel as if they should have the right to decide on their own if and when it is or is not a responsible time to have a drink or smoke a joint. The fac...

The PUCO is assessing what happened in Akron's AT&T outage
not the first time for that steam pipe break... happened in the late 70's when the office was being converted to electronic switch ESS.. was a big mess then but...

The freeze of green-energy standards hurts Ohio wind and solar industries
What do we do at night and when the wind isn't blowing? Where does the power come from to back-up these renewable sources?

Gov. Kasich may still face budget battles with Ohio lawmakers
Governor Kasich continues to disappoint many of us who voted for him when he was elected Governor four years ago. It is way past time for charter schools to b...

FairlawnGig could bring super-fast fiber optic internet to the city
Sign me up! When can we have it. It is not nice to tease us with the possibility and then make us wait. Though I have to add that the speed to China does req...

Copyright © 2015 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University