The Baltimore city schools have hired a data forensics company to investigate cheating in the schools.
The Baltimore Sun reports that the Baltimore school board approved last week a $275,000 contract with Caveon Testing Security to look into cheating allegations over the past three years.
In 2009 and 2010, elementary schools in Baltimore City that were recognized for successful test scores — two schools were singled out, one by First Lady Laura Bush and another by Education Secretary Arne Duncan — were found to have test booklet that had been tampered with after testing was completed.
The move looks like it will serve to further heighten tense relations between the school CEO Andres Alonso and the teachers’ union. The union has been displeased with the CEO’s firing of the principal at one of the school’s accused of cheating and his reluctance to reinstate her after hearing officers found that there was insufficient evidence to fire her. The principal will get her job back, but not until 2013.
“The children of Baltimore City deserve a CEO who is focused on education, not one who is determined to win at all costs because he cannot bear to admit that he was wrong,” Jimmy Gittings, the union president, said in a statement.
In a statement to the Baltimore Sun, Dr. Alonso said, “Nothing matters like the integrity of our outcomes, and no one can question those outcomes now. That is worth every price.”