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Woodbridge Teachers, Principals Punished In Cheating Scandal

Classroom (file / credit: clipart.com)

Classroom (file / credit: clipart.com)

WOODBRIDGE, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — Two elementary school principals and three teachers in Woodbridge have been suspended with pay after state investigators said they helped students cheat or encouraged cheating on standardized tests last year and in 2010.

“We take the quality integrity of our data very seriously,” state Department of Education spokesperson Barbara Morgan told WCBS 880′s Levon Putney on Wednesday.

WCBS 880′s Levon Putney reports

Morgan said test results are not for bragging rights, but rather to gauge progress and how well schools and districts are teaching kids, and where more help may be needed.

“If that information is not accurate, we cannot rely on that to be able to do our jobs correctly and at the highest level that we need to,” Morgan said.

“We also need to identify the trends of where we need additional assistance, whether at the school level or at the state level in terms of where we can invest resources and where we might need to make changes,” she told Putney.

Overall, education officials said teachers do a good job and do not help students cheat.

“These few cases are not cause for widespread concern,” Morgan said.

State officials said in the coming weeks, the Department of Education will detail more cheating found at two dozen schools between 2008 and 2011.

What punishment should be handed out to the teachers and administrators accused of helping students to cheat? Share your comments below…