[UPDATE] Tallahassee, Florida - June 17th 5:47 pm--
23 Leon County School students may have cheated on the FCAT. That's according to state education officials.
The Department of Education hired a security firm to find irregularities in the FCAT.
It looked for several of the same wrong or right answers among students sitting near each other in class. It found 7,000 suspicious tests.
Jahadah Rasheed is a 5th grader. She said, "It be so scary... if you get a bad score your mama gonna tear you up. Yeah it's a whole bunch of stress."
The students were at ten different Leon County Schools.
The district will now conduct its own investigation to see if the students did cheat. This is the first year the D.0.E. has used this technology for testing.
Tallahassee, Florida - June 17, 2011 -
A test security firm hired by the state Department of Education to find irregularities that could point to cheating found nearly 7,000 suspicious tests out of 4 million. The state has also sent a notice to 14 school districts alerting them that high levels of suspicious test scores were found in their district. What school districts are impacted was not disclosed, citing an ongoing investigation. But a report in the Daytona Beach News-Journal said test scores of nearly 100 Volusia and Flagler students on the FCAT and algebra exams were being reviewed for possible cheating. The security firm looked for an unusual number of erased answers or exam answers that were nearly identical.
The Florida school districts that must investigate suspicious test scores on FCAT and algebra end-of-course exams are: Broward, Miami Dade, Duval, Flagler, Gadsden, Hillsborough, Jefferson, Lee, Leon, Manatee, Orange, Palm Beach, Polk and Seminole. These school districts all had tests that had high numbers of erased answers. The districts are asked by the Department of Education to investigate the matter. A report by a test security firm hired by the state Department of Education found nearly 7,000 suspicious tests out of a total of 4 million FCAT and algebra exams.