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The Lake News Online
  • Personnel hearing set for middle school principal

  • After postponing embattled Principal Sean Kirksey's personnel hearing last week, the Camdenton R-III school board have scheduled the hearing for Wednesday Aug. 28 at 9 a.m. in the RC Worthan Auditorium at Camdenton High School.
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    After postponing embattled Principal Sean Kirksey's personnel hearing last week, the Camdenton R-III school board have scheduled the hearing for Wednesday Aug. 28 at 9 a.m. in the RC Worthan Auditorium at Camdenton High School.
    Kirskey, principal at Camdenton Middle School, has been on paid administrative leave since MAP test cheating allegations were raised this summer. After turning over the allegations to the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, breaches of security were found.
    DESE officials said that evidence was found that students were allowed extra time and that the principal divided the 7th grade Communication Arts test over two days when it was supposed to be a one-day test.
    Due to the breaches of security, that test data will not be used for the district's annual performance report. The report is what determines the district's accreditation. DESE uses three years of reports to determine the accreditation classification. Therefore, this one incident will most likely not affect the district's accreditation.
    According to the documents provided by Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education , the alleged MAP testing violations are isolated to the middle school and two staff members who were placed on administrative leave.
    The report identified one seventh-grade math teacher referred to only as "Heather," the building principal and an individual referred to as "Mr. Kirksey."
    The initial reporting of the MAP testing discrepancies appears to be connected to several students who were in the classroom where the math teacher was giving signals to students when answers on the testing forms were incorrect.
    The report said the teacher was nodding "no" when students had the wrong answers. Referred to only as "Heather" in the report, the teacher is believed to have been with the district for about two years. The report said the teacher denied any wrongdoing.
    According to the report, 21 students were interviewed and gave similar answers. Other improprieties noted in the report include the teacher admitting to students what she was doing was wrong and could get her fired. The teacher allowed students extra time to take the tests and checked their answers at the end of the testing period.
    The students reportedly shared with others they had been given help with answers. One or more parents may have been responsible for reporting what happened.
    The district allegedly learned of the possible testing problems over a weekend and immediately launched an internal investigation.
    It was during the investigation by the district into the classroom allegations that other discrepancies surfaced involving testing procedures. The district self-reported their findings to DESE.
    Students recently started classes at Camdenton Middle school under new administration. Interim principal, Dr. Paula Brown, and interim assistant principal, Billy Kurtz, are leading the building at the time.
    Page 2 of 2 - Assistant Principal Joel Carey is also on administrative leave. Camdenton R-III Administration have not released information on why Carey is on leave.
     
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