The state Department of Education’s year-long investigation into testing irregularities in a handful of public schools in 2010 and 2011 has leveled serious accusations against two more institutions, including a Newark charter founded by one of the state’s preeminent power brokers.Late yesterday the department released critical investigative reports of the Robert Treat Academy Charter School in Newark...Investigators cited testing and security breaches by administrators and teachers at both schools during the 2010 and 2011 cycles of the New Jersey Assessment of Skills and Knowledge (NJ ASK). The department claims that staff members coached students to correct wrong answers and allowed for security lapses with answer sheets.
State officials last night added nothing to the late afternoon release, saying they would let the reports speak for themselves...Robert Treat has been among the high fliers in the state’s charter school movement, one of the original 13 approved under former Gov. Christie Whitman and making headlines ever since.It has consistently posted well-above-average scores both in Newark’s mostly Hispanic North Ward and in the state itself -- some of the highest...In each case, scanning analysis revealed that an inordinate number of student had erased wrong answers, changing them to correct ones. The state first asked the schools to look into the issue and then sent in their own investigators. Erasure analyses are now common in testing security...Among the evidence gathered by the DOE were numbers of correct answers that did not make statistical sense, investigators said. Erasure rates were six or seven times the averages of other schools. Nine of 24 students got perfect scores on the math test. And the rate of improvement for students in the sixth grade over previous scores defied all odds.“The odds of 64.0 percent of sixth-grade students having a higher MATH score in 2011 compared to their scores in 2009 [fourth grade] and 2010 [fifth grade is less than one out of one million,” the report said...
Robert Treat Academy
“Department of Education Cheating Investigation Implicates Two More Schools - Report claims that improvements in test scores at Robert Treat Academy, a high-profile charter, defy all odds.” NJSpotlight, 11/14/2012
Read the NJDOE report @. http://www.njspotlight.com/assets/12/1113/2158 (235KBpdf)