Seven Students Punished in Grade Changing Scheme

Churchill principal says more teens could be involved

At least seven students at Churchill High School in Potomac, Md., will be punished for their roles in a grade-changing scheme.

The Montgomery County state’s attorney has yet to decide if charges will be filed.

Even more students could be implicated as the investigation continues, according to Joan Benz, Churchill’s principal. She updated parents, students and staff in a letter sent on Friday.

Benz said the students who’ve been singled out were able to get the user IDs and passwords of Churchill teachers.

They allegedly hacked into the school’s computer system and charged money to improve grades of some students. They also are accused of lowering grades for students that they didn’t like.

The scheme was detected more than a week ago. However, a source told News4 that it might have been going on for two and a half years.

Churchill teachers are now reviewing more grades from the first semester of the school year to determine if more grades have been changed.  School officials will adjust any grades they find to be affected by this grade-changing scheme.  In some cases, they will even issue a new report card.

Principal Benz said the school is working to analyze and fix the weak spots in the school’s computer system.

Churchill is planning on holding a community meeting in the coming weeks address the questions of concerned parents. A date has not been set.

Students will also be able to sit down directly with school staff.

The names of the seven students who are being punished have not been released. 

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