Investigation Targets More Classrooms for Possible Cheating

2/10/2012, 1:37 p.m.

Revelation almost two years ago of a cheating scandal that spawned the investigation of several District classrooms, has now shed on about 35 more classes that could have possibly been involved.

In the wake of an abnormal amount of erasures found on student tests during analysis of the 2011 DC Comprehensive Assessment System, the Office of the State Superintendent for Education (OSSE) has called for an ongoing investigation to be conducted by an independent firm to be announced next week.

As of Feb. 10, there has been no mention of which schools have now been targeted, but an initial investigation revealed that pressure for teachers to improve their classroom performance might have been tied in with the erasures.

"We are committed to restoring and improving confidence in our standardized tests security and recognize that teachers and students are working hard on improving test scores," OSSE Director Hosanna Mahaley said in a statement. "We believe wholeheartedly that the overwhelming majority of school leaders, teachers, and students are playing by the rules."

The cheating scandal first came to light in 2010 after a USA investigation challenged significant test improvements noted in some District schools while Michelle Rhee served as chancellor.