Accounting firm helping investigate alleged cheating in Texas school district

El Paso's public school system has been embroiled by recent cheating allegations that include the potential linking of an assistant high school principal and several teachers.

The district's school board then sought the forensic audit capabilities of Weaver LLP's El Paso office. The public accounting firm is one of the largest in regioinal, independent firms in the Southwest.

Weaver's staff have been tasked with performing an audit of documents and correspondence related to the cheating allegations, including email and grades from 2010.

Accounting firms often perform forensic audits related to financial crimes or when researching business operations for valuation, but their use in academic cheating scandals is less documented.

Many large practices are, however, involved in ensuring accuracy of various non-financial issues. For instance, Ernst & Young manages the tabluation and security of voting results for the Miss USA Pageant and ESPN's ESPY awards, and PwC does likewise for the Golden Globes and Academy Awards.

In the El Paso school case, the firm's auditors presented their findings to the school board's trustees, who will meet on Friday and may take action based on the findings. That information has not been made public.

According to reporting by the El Paso Times, the vice principal allegely directed several teachers to enter "made-up grades for students who who were removed from class" as part of a math tutoring program. The students, according to one teacher, were not actually being tutored at all. Other teachers have reported similar events.

 

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