Madison Students Re-Test After Cheating Incident - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Madison Students Re-Test After Cheating Incident

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A week after several inaccuracies were found on math and reading tests at Madison Elementary in Davenport, the school is trying to get back on track, re-testing students this week.  

Suspicions were raised in February after an aide looking over the tests noticed several answers were changed to correct answers on math and reading assessments.   

District leaders launched an investigation, interviewing teachers and other personnel who might've had access to tests, but couldn't find the person or people responsible.

Madison students were re-tested with observers from the district Monday and Tuesday, and makeup tests will be administered Thursday. 

Davenport Superintendent Dr. Arthur Tate says these new tests will be scored by the state but won't count towards state assessments. He says the district re-tested students so they could evaluate for themselves how the school is doing, using those test results to help plan for next year.    

But since those results won't count, the superintendent says Madison will most likely fall below standards for 'No Child Left Behind.' 

"The school will not make adequate yearly progress, because they had no scores recorded," Dr. Tate says. 

Schools that don't make adequate yearly progress are labeled as 'Schools In Need of Assistance,' or SINA status. 

"That could mean parents would be offered another option to go to another school, and it means they will have to take reform measures and do things a little bit differently in school," Dr. Tate says. 

Parents say despite this cheating incident, they don't hold the school responsible. 

"I don't really think it was the school district's fault," Gina Cracraft, who has students at Madison, says, "It was whoever does the testing, whoever calculates the scores." 

"It's a reputable school so hopefully they'll be able to find who did it and resolve it," another parent Kathy Thomas says. 

Parents like David Sodemann say they're using the incident as a learning lesson for their kids. 

"It's an example of people making bad choices to use to encourage your kid to make the right choices when it comes to taking tests, or really doing anything in life," he says. 

As for the investigation, it remains open. The district is hoping anyone with new information will come forward and help bring the case to a close, so they can move forward.  

"We continue our life, we try to be as normal as possible for the students and the parents in the community and we move on," Dr. Tate says.      

All the information from the district's investigation on this was forwarded to the Department of Education today. TV6 tried to get in touch with the Director of the department, but did not get a response on how they're handling this.      

Meanwhile, the superintendent has created a task force to take a look at possible rule changes on test security.

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