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School selling extra test points

UPI News Service, 11/11/2009 

A North Carolina school is being accused of selling grades for a program that awards extra test points for monetary donations to the school.

Susie Shepherd, principal of Rosewood Middle School in Goldsboro, said the scheme designed by a parent advisory council offers 10 extra points on two tests of the student's choosing in exchange for a $20 donation to the school, The (Raleigh, N.C.) News & Observer reported Wednesday.

Rebecca Garland, the chief academic officer for the state Department of Public Instruction, said she fears the program sends the wrong lesson about buying grades.

"If a student in college were to approach a professor to buy a grade, we would be frowning on that," Garland said. "It might even be a reason for dismissal. We're teaching kids something that if they were to do it later, they could get in trouble for."

However, Shepherd said the program does not amount to selling grades because extra points on two tests are unlikely to have an effect on a student's final grade.

She said it is incorrect to suggest "one particular grade could change the entire focus of nine weeks."

Shepherd said no donations have yet been collected.

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Copyright 2009 by United Press International

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