CHICAGO (CBS) — Two Chicago high schools will start the new school year without their principals, who have been removed by the Chicago Public Schools, amid separate investigations by the district’s inspector general.
Senn High School principal Susan Lofton and Marine Leadership Academy at Ames principal Fred Aguirre were removed on Friday, and have been slated for pre-suspension hearings, and possible firings, pending a review by CPS.
A CPS statement said both cases stem from unrelated investigations by the inspector general’s office.
Sources told WBBM that Lofton was removed from office over allegations she tampered with admission test scores to keep some students out of the Edgewater neighborhood school, which has seen a major turnaround in recent years.
Sources say Lofton lowered the scores of incoming special education students to keep them from qualifying for a premier arts program so the average test scores of the program would remain high.
“It was really bogus of her to do that because she always talked about giving students an opportunity and she ended up not giving opportunity to other students,” said Senn student Diana Espinosa.
Lofton was hired in 2010, and oversaw Senn moving from among the worst performing schools in the district to among the best.
As for Aguirre, he allegedly violated district residency requirements mandating CPS employees hired after a certain date live in the city. Sources tell CBS 2 that he lives in Cicero.
While the district searches for interim principals, the schools’ assistant principals will serve as administrators in charge at their respective schools.