Teachers at a Fairfax County elementary school made sure that students answered all the questions on their state standardized exams, a "testing irregularity" under scrutiny by the Virginia Department of Education.
Charles Pyle, a spokesman for the state education department, says there is no evidence that the four Fort Belvoir Elementary School teachers gave correct answers to 276 of their third, fourth and fifth grade students. However, they did require students to fill out their Standards of Learning testing booklets with answers before transferring them to the bubble-sheet, which is against state testing policy because it could lead to bubbling mistakes.
And in some cases, the teachers would not allow their students to transfer those answers until ensuring they had answered every question on the test.
Fairfax County Public Schools spokesman John Torre declined to say whether any teachers were reprimanded, saying the decision was "an HR issue."
Beginning Wednesday, Fairfax County schools sent letters home to the parents of the 276 affected students, giving them the option of having their children's scores invalidated; the parents of the 294 students who were not affected were notified as well.
Math and reading exams across the third, fourth and fifth grades, as well as the writing exam in the fifth grade, were compromised, Torre said.
All Fort Belvoir staff members are to participate in "a detailed training session in test administration," and the school system's Department of Professional Learning and Accountability will conduct a testing audit at Fort Belvoir next school year.
The elementary school also must submit a corrective plan to the Virginia Department of Education explaining what steps Fort Belvoir will take to ensure the problem doesn't happen again.
Terri Breeden, head of the accountability office, did not immediately return phone calls seeking comment. A statement from the school system did not say if any teachers had been suspended or fired.
Three teachers and another school employee in D.C. were fired for inappropriately helping students on standardized tests this past spring.