Grade snafu flunks ‘A’ student
Jeremy M. Lazarus | 12/13/2018, 6 a.m.
Michael Donovan was surprised when his son brought home a report card for the first nine weeks at Lucille M. Brown Middle School that showed the sixth-grader had an F in Spanish.
“That’s extremely unusual because he is a very solid student,” said Mr. Donovan, who began making inquiries of the teacher and the school counselor.
His inquiry appears to have uncovered a problem that Richmond Public Schools is now seeking to deal with as it also begins work on correcting hundreds of error-filled student transcripts that turned up after a state audit.
Mr. Donovan said the counselor did some research and responded that “the teacher had entered my son’s grade as a 78, but somehow ‘the system’ changed it. It turned out the 78 was not correct either, and he had an A in the class.”
While his son’s grade has been corrected, Mr. Donovan sent out a Facebook post Nov. 30 reporting what happened to alert other parents that their children’s grades possibly could be incorrect.
The responses to Mr. Donovan’s Facebook post show that his son was not alone, though it is unclear how widespread the problem is.
RPS spokeswoman Kenita Bowers confirmed that Mr. Donovan turned up a previously unnoticed problem.
In response to a Free Press query, Ms. Bowers stated, “This was not caused by the system changing grades but, instead, it was a data entry error. We are currently reviewing protocols with staff and putting parameters in place so that this does not continue to be an issue going forward.”