City residents react to high school test obtained by Project Baltimore: “It’s sad.”
BALTIMORE (WBFF) - Project Baltimore has obtained a test given to seniors at Northwood Appold Community Academy II, or NACA II – the same Baltimore school now under investigation by city schools over allegations of grade changing that were reported by Fox45.
The questions came from a final exam. The teacher who gave the test to Project Baltimore, said these questions were for a senior level course at the northeast Baltimore school.
The test begs the question, are Baltimore City students being held to a high enough standard?
With these questions, from different sections of the test written on a white board, we gave the marker to folks in Fell’s Point. Most were surprised by the simplicity of the questions.
These were the questions:
1) Draw the punctuations on a keyboard
2) True or False?
-A small defect or fault in a program is a bug.
3) Acronym for Random-Access Memory
Several people thought the test was for elementary school students, as young as first grade.
"It makes me sad about our school system," said one woman who answered the questions.
“I don’t know what they are teaching in school now-a-days, but these seems really easy,” said another person.
“It’s a justice issue and a testament to how broken the school system is,” said another person who answered the questions.
Project Baltimore spoke with a teacher from Northwood Appold Community Academy II, or NACA II, where the test was given to students.
Upon request, we are disguising the teacher's identity. But Fox45 was told, by the teacher, that this type of test with these types of questions are standard for senior level courses at NACA II.
"That should be for an elementary school student," the teacher told us. "A lot of the kids were not at grade level as far as being able to function and read accordingly.”
In early August, a Fox45 investigation exposed allegations of grade changing at NACA II, so some seniors could graduate. Two days after that first report, North Avenue launched its own investigation into the school. For legal reasons, school officials will now no longer comment on NACA II. But Project Baltimore showed the test to Baltimore City Schools’ Chief Academic Officer Sean Conley before their investigation was launched.
"Our work is aligned to the Maryland Career and College Readiness Standards. Point blank," Conley said. "I would have to look into this and look at each of the questions to see if it would meet the standard."
When asked for his first impression, he responded, "I don't like to assume or jump to conclusions. But it is definitely something I would want to look at."
Governor Larry Hogan was willing to share his thoughts, especially after Fox45 informed him the senior who took the test had failed, yet still received a high school diploma.
"It's shocking and outrageous and needs to be investigated,” Hogan said. “We're glad that you're working on this entire investigation of the Baltimore City School System. I think it's great that the school board decided to act. It was the right thing to do. They have to get to the bottom of this."