Michelle Rhee responds to federal investigation of alleged DCPS cheating

Federal investigators announced Monday that they found no evidence of widespread cheating in D.C. Public Schools, despite detailed allegations of systematic cheating laid out in a whistleblower complaint by former Noyes Education Campus principal Adell Cothorne.


Former D.C. Schools chancellor Michelle Rhee. (Sarah L. Voisin/TWP)

Cothorne tells some details of the problems she saw at Noyes in a Frontline television documentary to be broadcast at 10 p.m. Tuesday.

Test scores rose in Washington during Rhee’s tenure as chancellor, but the District still has among the widest achievement gaps and lowest graduation rates in the country.

Rhee is now head of Students First, the lobbying organization she founded to spread the reforms she championed in D.C.

Here’s her statement:

“Yesterday, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Inspector General announced that their investigation found no widespread cheating on the DC Comprehensive Assessment System tests from 2008-2010. This conclusion supports previous investigations and findings of the DC Office of the Inspector General and others. At StudentsFirst we believe it is in­cred­ibly important to take all allegations of wrongdoing seriously and we thank both offices for doing so. The results confirm what we’ve long believed, that the vast majority of educators would never compromise their personal or professional integrity to cheat on a test, thereby cheating children.

“With six separate, consecutive tests (both DC CAS and NAEP) showing significant improvements in academic achievement, we congratulate the children and educators in DC for their hard work and accomplishments.”

Emma Brown writes about national education and about people with a stake in schools, including teachers, parents and kids.
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