L.I. School Superintendent Accused Of Fixing Grades Hands In Resignation, But Gets $545,000

Many People Are Wondering How Joseph Cipp Jr. Gets To Keep 2 Years Of Salary

BELLPORT, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A hefty severance deal has been reached involving a school boss accused of “fixing” an athlete’s grades on Long Island. The school superintendent has agreed to resign, but will continue to be paid for two years.

The South Country Central School District voted to accept the resignation of its superintendent, who is accused of raising a football star’s grades to get him a college scholarship, reports CBS 2’s Carolyn Gusoff.

Joseph Cipp Jr. will resign with $545,000, his salary for the next two years, but questions linger over his role in getting Ryan Sloan into Syracuse University.

WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall On The Story

Some think the deal sweeps the scandal under the rug.

“There has been a conspiracy in our school district and it’s not in the best interest of the taxpayers or our children,” school board member Lisa DiSanto Grossman said.

One man said he knows grades were changed. He was asked to make the changes, refused, and was fired as principal four days later. He said the message was clear to him.

“The message to me clearly was that this particular student had to have a particular grade and I was approached by particular individuals and asked as to my influence over certain people,” Kevin O’Connell said.

Cipp, a legendary Long Island football coach who later became superintendent, was accused of changing Sloan’s grades in math health and gym. The decision to let Cipp resign with a huge payout has this football-driven community divided.

“If you and I did something wrong and had to slowly quietly resign, we’d … we wouldn’t have anything, no benefits,” one woman said.

“I know that Joe is a good man and I don’t think all the evidence has come to the surface yet,” an older man added.

“That large sum to keep someone out does not benefit education,” another person added.

The school board president said the decision to pay Cipp more than half a million dollars to leave was reached because if he had been fired and sued that would have cost far more.

So now the community may never know what an internal investigation into the scandal found. The board has dubbed the report confidential.

Gusoff reached out to the resigning superintendent, but he did not immediately respond.

Please offer your thoughts in the comments section below …

  • sick of it all

    They should indict and convict this low life and hopefully he would loose his overinflated pension.This is a prime example,why taxes are so insane

  • Linda Ann

    This is very sick that he gets his pay to do NOTHING!!!

  • sesbian

    Fire everyone who agreed on this, There is no reason he should get any $ for this. It is just wrong when someone can act unethically and get paid for 2 years for doing nothing; and, the working poor will not make this much for 20 years of hard work and following the laws.

  • http://wolfcreekweldinginc.wordpress.com unclebs

    There’s no better con artist than a government worker.

  • jb

    Organized sports ARE organized crime. Commercial leagues get the public to fund the training of their atheletes. If we invest the money in academics we get it back as more doctors and engineers helping society. When we spend it on sports, we get nothing back. Major sports leagues get the only benefit of well trained atheletes.

    We finance their training, and then we buy tickets to see the performance. When do we get any return on investment?

  • Gringo With Legs

    This is why I’m planning on retiring outside the U.S. and selling my home to a greater fool. No way will I continue to get soaked for $7200/year in property taxes, most of it going to the school district who are perennially whining for more money. The last ‘technology levy’ was passed and did the students get a new computer lab? No, the staff upgraded their computers and bought themselves ipads and unlimited data plans. They use fear and threats to give themselves raises and fat retirement at an early age.

  • Tom

    It’s Rushes fault.

  • George Johnson

    People do NOT want to investigate this. Because they would find HUGE, WIDESPREAD cheating scandals. Like Atlanta, LA… It’s everywhere. Government demands proof that kids are learning, and their money depends on it, so what are teachers gonna do?? CHEAT. It’s really that simple. Not all of them, but most. Why? It’s the ONLY way they can get good grades with them teaching “self esteem” and “feel good 101”. Schools are not about teaching the basics ny more, it’s a liberal indoctrination center. So they MUST cheat.

  • http://www.abortionNO.org turnkit

    Why are public administrators making $272,500 per year in the first place?

    I guess this is where all that sympathy for needing to pay teacher’s higher wages goes. Terribly overpaid!

  • george

    Liberal-run institutions never give a fig how poorly money is spent, be they unionized schools or federal or state governments. How many times do taxpayers need to see themselves flipped off in this manner before their voting habits finally change?

  • enoughAlready911

    Why are folks on the coasts so morally/ethically screwed up?
    Is it the culture that says corruption and special “deals” are the norm?

    Simply unacceptable….when you will people there say no more?
    Will they ever?

    • fedup2

      Everyone is waiting for their own deal.

    • MDWhite

      Check your nearest atlas, sparky. Chicago, Obama’s home base, is in Illinois, which isn’t on either coast.

    • Dave LaSorte

      Whay were they paying this piece of s**t over $220,000 per year in the first place???

    • george

      Nah. Too busy worrying about who will make the cut on “American Idol.”

  • Just Me

    What kind of “footbal star” needs help in gym class?

  • nostudme


  • Walter Billings

    That is NYC. Just as screwed up as can be.


    Whoever approved the severance needs to be fired.

  • RoccoP

    This happens MORE often than people know. I was approached by my Principal to change a student’s grade from a C minus to a B or higher but I refused and got assigned to the worst classes imaginable. This is only the tip of the iceberg.

  • Michael

    They fixed his grade in GYM?

    • Lawrence

      Wonder why New York State is broke. They are worse than MAFIA ever was. Break the law and get rewarded for it. NYS is sewer of world.

  • Gene

    One question. Since the school system is a public system and not a private entity can the investigation deemed “confidential” be made Public through the Freedom of Information Act? A half a million dollars out of the school system budget sure would seem to put a dent in education of our children. I am sure that money can be better spent.

  • pete smith

    Funny, I know that the United States Air Force Academy apparently fixed the grade of a cadet. Funny, in this incident they appraently rigged the grade to FAIL THE CADET when he actually passed. Nobody is in trouble and they continue to cover it up! They actually destroyed his final so nobody can every see it including the cadet who was in trouble over another incident. It’s all who you know. Make them pass or make them fail it does not matter if you are a mucky muck!

    • Gotcha

      You know that the USAFA “apparently” fixed a grade?

      Either they fixed a grade, or apparently they fixed a grade. It can’t be both.

      Sounds like you really don’t know anything.

  • watchdog

    Where are all the bullies? They are liberal spawn that reside in unions. This guy is caught red-handed and yet he’s the one threatening the district, and what do they do? They capitulate. Someone made a phone call because this goes higher up. Follow the money. There is more to this story.

  • jim nase

    i blame bush

  • Dan Spot

    First, this is an article on a lamestream media so take it with a big grain of salt.

    Second, the real problem is our judicial system – they probably settled for $545K because the lawsuit would have cost them more. If that’s the case they did the taxpayers a favor.

    What we need is a zero-appeal, trial-by-elected-judge judicial system with sentences modeled after Biblical justice.

  • BobB

    Can’t wait to see Syracuse pull this kid’s scholarship since he knew the grades were fraudulent. After all, we have to protect the integrity of the so-called “student athlete” system.

  • JenS

    You can put this squarely on the Unions

  • Sue Johnson

    Another dumb jock at Syracuse University, go figure.

  • Kathy

    Here the poor schools of Upstate New York are fighting so hard to save jobs that are much needed to be able to continue to teach our children. The State really needs to reconsider where they are sending more Aid money and how it is spent. I feel bad for the tax payers in that district. What a waste of money that could be better used elsewhere.

  • Proud American

    Isn’t it about time that these”never for the public to see” reports and recordings be made available,by law for everyone? Then let the taxpayers will decide what to do.

  • goblin

    Another unionized freebie.

  • Bob

    THIS is whats wrong with this country

  • NYCsewer

    Where are the FEDS

  • sharon wolff

    Whoa. I think I’m missing something here. A school superintendent is resigning for being accused, perhaps found guilty of fixing an athletes grades AND will be paid his %545,000 salary. Someone is on the take here. If a police officer or a high ranking police employee is found guilty of a crime I do believe they lose their pension. So what the heck is this cheating, dishonest guy being paid his full salary? Because he resigned or was asked to resign? What the hell kind of deal is that? The message being sent here is, he did wrong but, he will still be paid. Gee, remember the student that took SAT’s for other students. What is wrong with this country

    • George Johnson

      Unions. Pure and simple.

      • torabora

        You are WRONG. Unions have NOTHING to do with this. Union members don’t get buy-outs , they get fired for wrong doing and sent packing with nothing past their owed pay. You need to learn it’s the non-union Administrators that get these huge payouts when they get fired.

        What is it going to take for you to understand the facts?>

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