Kingsbury High teachers say assistant principal ordering them to give grades students didn’t earn

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Some teachers at a Shelby County high school say they're frustrated after receiving an email from the assistant principal asking them to give students grades they didn't earn.

One instructor forwarded the email to WREG.

The teacher said it was sent on Monday from Assistant Principal Nora Jones asking them to fill in missing grades for students.

It goes on to state, "The grade floor at Kingsbury HS is 65. If you issued grades below a 65, please correct this also."

The teacher was afraid to go on camera, but expressed concern saying this means teachers have to give a student a 65 even if that student didn't show up to class.

"You cannot give to students what they do not earn," said Keith Williams.

Williams is with the Memphis-Shelby County Education Association. He said this isn't the first time he's seen schools in the district implement a grade floor.

"Principals do not have the right to establish these floor-ceiling grades. They certainly do not have the rights to put teachers in these troublesome situations," he said.

Williams said it's a way to get grades and scores up at schools, and the district and school board is well aware of it. He said he brought up the grading policy and these concerns at past meetings.

"It should be responded to. The district has a responsibility to codify grading and policy across this district," said Williams.

The district's grading policy doesn't mention a grade floor like the one in the email.

We called the school, and the principal said he had no comment. He directed us to the district.

SCS responded Wednesday evening that the district had just learned about the situation and was looking into it.

"I'm hopeful the district will take this again as an opportunity to establish policy in this district, a grading policy," said Williams.