Prince George's County leaders question schools CEO amid grade-fixing audit

- CEO of Prince George’s County Schools Dr. Kevin Maxwell faced questions from county leaders Tuesday after results of a grade-fixing audit found students are graduating without meeting requirements.

School officials say no one has lost their job or been punished after the audit, and Dr. Maxwell has retained support from County Executive Rushern Baker.

At the meeting, county council members told FOX 5 they continue to have faith in Maxwell’s leadership.

“I have faith in all of our efforts to ensure that our children have a great education system in Prince George’s County,” said county council chair Derrick Leon Davis.

Council member Mary Lehman said she still has faith in Maxwell, but also has concerns. She said she believes the central administration is responsible for the audit findings.

“They need to have known more about what was going on in each of our individual schools,” Lehman said. “I don’t want to see school-based staff disciplined. I think all of them were under a certain amount of pressure.”

However, another council member pointed out that a lack of discipline would send a message that the audit findings are acceptable.

“If we found people that did things that were wrong and inappropriate, they will be disciplined appropriately,” Maxwell said in response.

Maxwell sighted sloppy record keeping for the audit findings, and again refused an interview.

Maxwell and his staff have less than 60 days to create a plan to address these major problems and submit it to the state for review.

Part of that plan will include identifying what will happen to graduates who did not meet requirements and now want help. The school system has said no one will lose their diploma.

FOX 5 asked school spokesman John White if Maxwell and his administration had ruled out a broader ethics problem.

“This administration has said if there’s evidence of deliberate intent to deceive then we will take disciplinary action to correct it,” he said.

Maryland State Sen. Anthony Muse, who previously called for Maxwell’s resignation also attended Tuesday’s meeting. He asked Maxwell about responsibility for the audit findings

“Yes, I still believe he should resign,” said Muse.

Muse said he’s concerned about how many students could have been impacted and why this is happening in Prince George’s County.

“The kinds of excuses; sloppy paperwork and everything else does not speak to the heart of who is responsible for this,” he said.

Former students and families with concerns can email Prince George's County Schools at gradsupport@pgcps.org.

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