Baltimore City school officials apologized Tuesday night for grading irregularities discovered at a West Baltimore high school in 2019 that resulted in students losing course credits and said they are taking action to help students catch up academically.
When the school system discovered the issues at Augusta Fells Savage Institute of Visual Arts in the summer of 2019, the principal and assistant principal were put on administrative leave and actions taken to help students who had lost credits toward a high school degree.
School board president Linda Chinnea and schools chief Sonja Santelises both addressed the issue at a school board meeting Tuesday evening following a Fox 45 report last week that told the story of a 17-year-old student at the school who had passed only three classes in four years at the high school.
Chinnea did not give details of the grading issue, but said that the situation was “painful and unacceptable” and that the there were “significant shortcomings” by school staff nearly three years ago.
Chinnea said the school system took immediate action when the problem was discovered and has conducted routine audits, selected a new principal and has been working to help students recover the credits and learning time they lost.
“Their educational journey is not over,” Chinnea said.
Santelises said students at Augusta Fells Savage would be given priority during the pandemic for additional tutoring and mentoring, and the school system will hold a town hall to explain what happened to parents.
“We will continue to work with families to get back on the path to learning,” Santelises said. “I want to take this opportunity to apologize to the families.” She said actions had been underway before the Fox 45 report.