‘I don’t think it’s going to be good’: Board member weighs in on investigation into Carver’s SOLs

Richmond

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – There are new details on the SOL test problems at Richmond’s Carver Elementary. 

The Department of Education is investigating the school for SOL testing irregularities. One school board member told 8News things aren’t looking good. 

School board members said the report from the Virginia Department of Education won’t be released for a week or two.

Carver is the only school in the state being investigated for SOL testing, causing concern for parents and school board members. 

Last month, Richmond Public Schools announced potential irregularities with SOL testing practices at Carver Elementary to parents.  

The state started investigating and found that some standardized procedures were not followed. 

As the investigation continues, school board members are starting to learn details. 

“We don’t think that the news is going to be very complimentary which is most unacceptable,” said Richmond Public Schools board member Jonathan Young. “We are concerned about where the report may be going.” 

Right now, Young said the news doesn’t look bright for Carver. 

“Testing irregularities could mean different kinds of things,” said Young.  “It could mean cheating but it can also mean that somebody just wasn’t following proper protocol. Our concern is however that it’s the perhaps the former and not the latter. Neither is good but one is sinister.”

If the state determines cheating took place, Young is worried about the future of the blue ribbon status at the school. 

“Some of the accolades that they allegedly accrued candidly we are going to have to turn back,” said Young.  “We’re going to have to turn back over and that’s really most unfortunate particularly for the kids right I mean so the students they are often put in the position where they are instructed to this or instructed to do that and through no fault of their own we may be in a place where all of their hard work and their accolades are flushed down the toilet.”

Last week, 8News reported that Dr. Kiwana Yates will no longer be Carver’s principal, RPS citing only a leadership change. 

“Carver Elementary School is currently undergoing a leadership change. As with all personnel matters, no further details can be shared. Carver Elementary parents and staff will receive more information regarding new leadership for the 2018-19 school year in the coming weeks.

After the report is released, Young said action may be taken. 

“That action will result in the kinds of personnel changes that you would expect to happen to hold folks accountable,” said Young. 

There is a meeting coming up July 10 at 5:00 p.m. for parents to discuss hiring a new principal.

The Department of Education said since this is an open investigation there are no reports or public records to share. 

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