Test Scores Scandal Develops as Culprits Begin to Plead Guilty

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Test Scores Scandal Develops as Culprits Begin to Plead Guilty

Kimberly Garcia, contributor

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Last year, the nation was rocked by the USC Admissions scandal with Lori Loughlin and her daughters. This year, the case continues to develop as an administrator from a West Hollywood high school pleads guilty in Boston court to “conspiracy to commit racketeering,” or tampering with students’ standardized test scores for money. Igor Dvorskiy admitted to accepting money to stay quiet about a Newport Beach consultant’s, William “Rick” Singer, years-long score-falsifying scam at West Hollywood College Preparatory School.

Singer would be paid by “clients,” parents of students, to allow their children to test at the school. Dvorskiy allowed Mark Riddell, Singer’s Harvard-graduate accomplice, to either tell the students the correct answers or would change them after they’ve finished testing. According to the prosecution, Singer was paid by clients between $15,000 to $75,000 per job, with Dvorskiy usually keeping $10,000 of the payments. Singer’s allegedly a repeat offender, as well; he ran a similar scheme back in one of Houston’s public high schools and bribed a teacher’s assistant to stay silent about the affair. Earlier in the year, Singer and Riddell pleaded guilty and are currently waiting to be sentenced.

The scam at the West Hollywood school has been going on from March 2017 through February 2019. Within that time, Dvorskiy let Singer interfere with SAT and ACT testing at the school 11 times; from those 11 times alone, Singer accumulated almost $150,000. Dvorskiy is set to be sentenced on February 7, 2020, for sanctioning the tampering of test scores and the use of a second proctor. He has agreed to cooperate with the prosecution and to testify at any possible trials later on. If it’s decided that Dvorskiy has helped enough, the time he’ll serve in prison, decided in his plea deal, will be cut short. Said plea deal arose last month after the test administrator’s original plead of not guilty.

Singer’s clients have been identified, as well, and four have been charged so far. The four parents have been threatened with indictment alongside 15 other clients who have maintained their innocence on a third felony count of federal program bribery if they didn’t plead guilty. Among the list of 15 people maintaining innocence are Lori Loughlin and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, the couple who were first revealed to have used their power and money to buy their daughters’ scores; those same 15 people have had more charges piled onto them.

Information Source: Los Angeles Times

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