MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A fraction of students at Trezevant High School got diplomas that they didn’t earn, according to an investigation that was ordered by Shelby County Schools after the high school became involved in a grading scandal.
Shelby County Schools hired an outsider to audit activity to Trezevant High School, and the results led the school board to fire coach Teli White, the man who is at the center of the scandal.
A mother of a student at Trezevant High School says she’s certain there’s no funny business going on with her daughter’s grades, but she does have questions about the diplomas that were given out.
“My daughter is earning her diploma the right way. No one is giving her any grades,” said the mother.
“What are they going to do about those unearned diplomas? Are they going to take them back from the students,” asked the mother.
Investigators found out that, over a four year period, 53 diplomas were given to students that should not have graduated.
Trezevant High School only has 140 students graduating this year, so 53 is a larger number.
WREG reached out to Ed Stanton III who led the grade scandal investigation. He hasn’t returned our call, but according to his findings, the school often changed transcript grades to help students who didn’t score well on entrance exams get into college.
“It only hurts them in the end, because they aren’t learning anything,” said the mother.
Stanton also found that highly sought after athletes got special treatment to make sure they got into colleges that were recruiting them, even if they couldn’t keep up with curriculum.
This mother says it makes no sense.
“That’s all they are telling them. As long as you are good at sports you’re fine. You’re are going to make it in life, and you are really not,” said the mother.
She says the findings are unsettling, but they are not a reflection of the entire school. “It’s not reflective of everyone. It’s reflective of a select few.”