While some officials caught up in a grade tampering scheme learned their punishments Tuesday, Principal Kermit Carolina was nowhere to be found and officials could not reach the school chief to inform him.
According to officials, last fall, Hillhouse High School Assistant Principal Shirley Love Joyner made serious allegations of grade tampering and preferential treatment of student athletes at Hillhouse.
Because of the graveness of the allegations, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Reginald Mayo immediately ordered an investigation into the matter and chose attorney Floyd Dugas to investigate and submit a report on his findings.
The investigation included reviews of student transcripts, grade reports, summer school reports and memos as well as dozens of interviews of Hillhouse and Riverside Academy staff.
None of the allegations involved tampering with state standardized tests. However, the investigation did substantiate several of Joyner's allegations and found evidence of isolated grade tampering and a culture of preferential treatment of certain student athletes by the Hillhouse administration.
The following allegations were substantiated:
Each employee was called in to meet with Mayo separately on Tuesday and to be informed of his or her discipline. Repeated attempts were made to reach Carolina during school hours, but he could not be located at school. He also failed to return calls to his cell phone. It was later determined he told his director he planned to leave early Tuesday. Mayo plans to meet with Carolina as soon as possible to issue discipline.
Officials released information detailing the extent of the punishments handed down Tuesday:
"Mistakes were made and lessons learned from this unfortunate incident. It is time to move on. It is time to bring our focus back to what matter most, educating our children," the superintendent said in a written statement. "Our mission as educators and leaders in New Haven Public Schools is to help our students succeed in the classroom, go to college and build a bright future."
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