County leaders concerned about possible ‘grade-fixing’ at Kingsbury High

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- WREG was first to tell you about possible grade-fixing at Kingsbury High, and school leaders won't answer our questions.

Now, Shelby County Commission Chair Heidi Shafer is getting involved. Kingsbury High is in her district.

"I heard about it on the news," said Shafer. "My first thought is we want to be very careful that we are just not socially promoting kids. We have done that in the past."

A Kingsbury High teacher forwarded WREG an email saying the assistant principal sent it Monday ordering them to fill in missing grades with at least a 65 even for those students who didn't show up to class.

The teacher expressed concern stating the kids were getting grades they didn't earn, and it makes it easier for them to pass without the knowledge they need.

Shafer said she called Superintendent Dorsey Hopson.

"He's aware of the issue, and they are taking it to the school board. The school board is going to examine and clarify the policy to make sure they are doing both things. They are neither discouraging kids where if they get a couple bad grades so there is no way they can recover, and on the other hand, we aren't socially promoting and making mistakes of the past," she said.

WREG reached out to every school board member again Friday asking them for an interview.

Chris Caldwell replied stating they're "looking into the situation to determine if, how and why this happened."

Teresa Jones also replied stating this was the first time she was hearing about it but that there was "no policy in place to address this."

In a phone call, Jones said while they will discuss this at the next board meeting, she expects the Internal Board Committee to call a meeting sooner to discuss this and get it on the agenda.

In an email, the Shelby County School District released this statement.

We've been asking them about the email since Wednesday.

Hopson took to twitter stating "there's no grade-fixing at Kingsbury. Some schools set a floor and encourage kids to do makeup work so they have a chance to pass their class."

He also posted, "If students get a couple of zeroes with no hope to pass, student more likely to give up, have no hope and drop out."

"It's going to be a hard balance to hit, but I have faith in the school ," said Shafer.

She said whatever the board comes up with, they need to review it every few months to make sure it's working.

WREG will continue to push for answers from the school board and district, and of course, will be at that next meeting on November 28.