(Memphis) Federal investigators uncovered a 15 year cheating scandal involving teachers and prospective teachers in a three state area.
They’ve identified the man at the center of the scandal but so far none of those who hired and helped him.
58-year-old Clarence Mumford went running when we went to his Whitehaven home.
He took off so fast and closed the garage door, he left the trunk up on his car and his keys on the hood.
“I didn’t think he would do something like that. I still don’t believe it,” said James Mc Clarity, a neighbor.
The feds say four MCS employees or former employees were hired by Mumford to help in the cheating scandal.
Investigators haven’t identified the at least 50 people involved, the other school districts or the prospective teachers who paid to have someone take their test.
Whoever they are, there’s little sympathy for those who mess with kids and their education.
“I pity the fool that tries to come up and say well, you know it’s understandable. That was a tough test. Absolutely not,” said, Mayor A C Wharton, Memphis mayor.
Mumford’s problem as an educator didn’t just start this week and neither did his problems with the law.
Right now, he’s also out on bond for a DUI and Indecent Exposure charge in Tunica.
His long career at MCS ended with him as a guidance counselor at Hillcrest High when a student accused him of fondling her.
The charges were eventually dismissed.
Even with a spotty record in two different states, Mumford was able to get another job in education.
He was hired at Hughes, AR. Mumford is the guidance counselor in the Hughes School District. We went by the school where he worked to check on the status of his employment.
We were told Hughes Superintendent Jimmy Wilkins would call us back but we’re still waiting. The folks who say the small school is the heart of their small community are also waiting.
“You would think they would have. They should have did a background check on him they should have,” said Nora Hornbeak, Hughes, AR.
She added, “I certainly hope it don’t do anything to our school system because we really need our school.”
Bogus test takers went to testing sites in Tennessee, Arkansas and Mississippi which means you could have some of these cheating teachers working just about anywhere.
News Channel 3 talked to spokespersons for Memphis City Schools, Shelby County Schools, DeSoto, West Memphis and Jonesboro Public Schools.
None have been contacted by the U.S. Justice Department as of yet.