I-Team: Cheating Investigation Underway at Local School - 8 News NOW

I-Team: Cheating Investigation Underway at Local School

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LAS VEGAS -- The state Attorney General's Office is investigating a possible teaching scandal at a local elementary school. The I-Team learned seven employees, including a principal, at Matt Kelly Elementary School were subpoenaed Thursday.

While this is not a criminal investigation, a statement from the state superintendent says that a criminal investigation may occur in addition to the administrative investigation currently underway.

Matt Kelly Elementary near Martin Luther King and Lake Mead boulevards was once a shining example of rising test scores. Now, there's the possibility those rising test scores were based on lies.

The school showed a spike in test scores in recent years. Third grade math scores had the the most dramatic improvement from 12 percent proficiency in 2007 to almost 70 percent in 2011.

Documents obtained by the I-Team show Clark County School District asked the state education department to look at Matt Kelly's test score jump in Aug. 2012.

8 News NOW previously reported the district was not suspicious of the school's scores until the next round of testing in April 2013.

CCSD sent its own people from the central office to run the standardized tests in April 2013.

According to sources, the investigation is focusing on erasure marks on the standardized tests, which raises the possibility that Kelly Elementary teachers let students erase incorrect answers and write down the correct answers given by the teachers, resulting in higher scores.

Sources tell the I-Team, seven employees, including a principal, teachers and school employees were subpoenaed Thursday to testify and to provide documents.

School superintendent Pat Skorkowsky said the district is cooperating with the investigation.

"In all of our schools, it is imperative that tests are administered in accordance with established procedures. We use standardized testing results to monitor student achievement growth and assess the success of our instruction in our schools. Parents have the right to be confident that state assessment results accurately portray what their students know and can do," he said.

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