Woodbridge Educators Accused in Cheating Scandal Suspended With Pay – Adequate Punishment? [POLL]
Do you feel that the 5 Woodbridge educators who were suspended by state due to the accusations they helped kids cheat should be dealt with more harshly than just suspended with pay?
Seeing is how standardized tests will probably go a long way in determining a teachers’ employment status, as well as the amount of aid a school will get going forward; this could not have come at a worse time.
However, one would think that something more than a suspension with pay would be called for in the wake of the cheating accusations.
Two Woodbridge elementary school principals and three teachers have been suspended after state investigators concluded they cheated or encouraged third-graders to cheat on state standardized tests…this according to a Department of Education probe.
The five educators were suspended with pay by the Woodbridge Board of Education on Monday night, just one week before the scheduled start of classes.
All five, four of whom are tenured, worked at the Avenel or Ross Street elementary schools.
The educators’ conduct was uncovered in the state’s “erasure analysis” of 2010 and 2011 NJ-ASK tests, in which investigators look for unusually high numbers of wrong-to-right erasures.
Investigators also received anonymous letters and phone calls about possible testing breaches at Middlesex County schools, officials said.
The scandal comes to light as the stakes in standardized testing in New Jersey are taking on more significance.
Scores are used to identify schools needing help, and next year the state will, for the first time, formally link teachers’ job security to their students’ test scores.
School Board President Brian Small said in a statement on the district website that the “conscious and intentional cheating” uncovered at the two schools is “absolutely unacceptable.”
The board’s “first step,” he said, was to accept the resignation of an assistant superintendent. Board member Lawrence Miloscia identified her as Lois Rotella. He would not elaborate.
The New Jersey Education Association said union attorneys are representing the teachers.
Woodbridge Township Education Association President Brian Geoffroy called the accusations “if true, terrible. We would not support any tampering with student work.”
Nor do I believe that a mere “suspension with pay” is an adequate response to the allegations, especially since, in my view, it only amounts to a “paid vacation!”