Thompson: "No Comment" on School Grade-Changing Investigation


By Alabama News Network

Montgomery Public Schools Supt. Barbara Thompson has released a statement regarding the expanded state investigation into grade-changing allegations in the school system.

Alabama News Network has sought an interview with Thompson for two days. 

Thompson's statement says:

"I join State Superintendent of Education Tommy Bice in refraining from any further comment concerning the allegations of improper grade changes pending the final outcome of the state's inquiry into the matter."

Others are speaking out about the investigation.

Montgomery Mayor Todd Strange told Alabama News Network that if the problems aren't solved and the state has to take over the school system, the city might start a school system of its own.

"What we'd do is take a blank sheet of paper and we'd start over. We'd be a city school system. That way, you'd have a new school board, you'd have a new administration," Strange said.

Some Montgomery County school board members are speaking out as well.

Board member Melissa Snowden says things went south on the first day of class.

"The first day of school, apparently Superintendent Thompson received a latter from Dr. Bice, the state superintendent."

That letter revealed that additional staff members were involved in grade changing.

Board member Mary Briers called into the radio show "The Capitol Buzz with Mark Montiel" on Newsradio 1440 to talk about the investigation and Thompson.

"Has Barbara Thompson not completed the task she was hired for and you should replace her?" asked Montiel on the air.

"I didn't say we should replace her, but if things turn out that way, so be it," Briers answered.

Board member Durden Dean says the board is ready to discipline all teachers involved in any grade changing.

"We'll identify those bad apples," he says. "We'll remove them."

Though Snowden says the board isn't afraid to remove just teachers.

"I don't think that any of us are afraid. If there need to be people removed from their positions, I do not think that we will not do that. I think we will do that but nobody's guilty until they're proven guilty."

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