FAKING THE GRADE: Ballou principal out, grad requirements may be lowered

Photo of Ballou High School in Washington, D.C. (ABC7 file photo)

Ballou High School's principal, Dr. Yetunde Reeves, was reassigned to another DCPS position. Dr. Willie Jackson, current principal of Phelps High School, takes over immediately, according to a Monday evening statement from DC Public Schools.

“We take this issue very seriously, and we know that policies must be explained clearly and implemented with fidelity. This investigation will restore integrity to the process by providing students, parents, and the broader community with answers,” said DC Public School Chancellor Antwan Wilson.

Last Wednesday, Chancellor Wilson defended Dr. Reeves, saying: “I certainly believe that Principal Reeves should be renewed based on my visits to the school, based on what we were learning from our team, and based on my time with her."

This comes after the 7 On Your Side I-Team first began November 18 reporting on attendance record irregularities, first with the Ballou Knights football team, and later revealing records showing high school seniors graduating despite more than 100 unexcused absences.

At the same time, the I-Team obtained internal documents showing proposals DC’s Graduation Requirement Task Force is considering.

The proposals include removing the requirements for the following classes: Algebra 2, World History 2, US Government, DC History. The proposals also include reducing the foreign language requirement from two years to one year.

The Task Force is expected to update the State Board of Education this Wednesday evening.

Monday evening, the Office of State Superintendent of Education announced the hiring of business consulting firm Alvarez and Marsal to audit DCPS and allegations about Ballou High School.

This story has been updated.

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