MHS Teacher Terminated

A teacher officials said was responsible for a testing violation at Meridian High School, which lowered the district's accreditation level, has been fired.

The Mississippi Department of Education and the Mississippi Attorney General's Office conducted separate investigations into the violation of the Spring 2008 English II Subject Area Test. Both state agencies report finding a violation.

The termination of the teacher, whose name was not revealed by authorities, was based on a separate investigation by school board attorney John Compton.

According to a district news release, the firing was based on the teacher sharing a previously administered English II subject area test with her students.

Compton's investigation also found that MHS principal Vicky Hood failed to report a complaint about a possible test security violation to the district test coordinator, but did not find that Hood tried to cover up the violation.

The release stated that the principal discussed the violation with the person who was test coordinator at the high school at the time and an assistant principal, with the initial consensus being the "alleged test violation" had no merit, but later determining that conclusion was in error.

The news release stated "the principal did not have the discretion to make the decision that the alleged test violation had no merit."

It was Compton's finding that Hood and the test security coordinator should have reported the alleged violation to the district test security coordinator.

The Meridian School District has notified the Mississippi Department of Education of its action of firing the teacher, and has appealed the downgrade of the district's accreditation, which officials say is still pending.

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