|(Gretchen Ertl for The Boston Globe)|
State education officials have concluded there was "pervasive, systemic cheating" among adults at a Springfield charter school on the MCAS, prompting the commissioner to recommend its closure, according to a memo obtained this afternoon by the Globe.
The state began investigating the Robert M. Hughes Academy after noticing that MCAS scores on this spring's English and math exams skyrocketed at one of the fastest rates in the state. Details on how the cheating took place were not immediately available this afternoon.
Mitchell Chester, the state's commissioner of elementary and secondary education, will formally present his recommendation to revoke the school's 10-year-old charter at Tuesday's meeting of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education in Malden. The state board will not vote on the recommendations until its January meeting.
The Hughes academy, which serves roughly 180 students in kindergarten through grade 8, is one of two charter schools the board will consider shuttering. The other is Lowell Community Charter Public School, which educates more than 900 students in kindergarten through grade 8. The 10-year-old school has a poor track record of academic achievement, according to a memo that Mitchell has sent to state board members.
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