NAACP Supports South Florida Student Accused of Cheating on SAT

Kamilah Campbell took her score of 900 and turned it into a 1230 in hopes of attending Florida State this fall

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  • Kamilah Campbell took her score of 900 and turned it into a 1230 in hopes of attending Florida State this fall

The NAACP and several Miami-Dade County school board members are supporting a South Florida student whose 330-point SAT score increase has test administrators questioning whether she may have cheated.

Miami-Dade NAACP President Ruban Roberts spoke out Friday to demand answers surround the test taken by Dr. Michael Krop Senior High School student Kamilah Campbell. In the span of seven months Campbell took her score of 900 and turned it into a 1230 in hopes of attending Florida State this fall, but Educational Testing Service, which administers the SAT, is skeptical of its validity.

Roberts said he wants to know more about how ETS handles suspected cheating cases.

"We are very concerned about the process of how these cases are identified," Roberts said at a press conference Friday that was also attended by Miami-Dade County Public School board members Dr. Steve Gallon and Dorothy Bendros Mindingal.

The test remains under review, but Campbell and her attorney, Benjamin Crump, want the test score released, since Florida State's deadline for scores was Tuesday and the delay could hurt her chance to get in.

"If you have evidence release it, if not, release her scores now," Crump said at Friday's press conference.

The ETS recently wrote Campbell a letter saying her scores are invalid because some of her answer patterns were too similar to those of others who took the test. Campbell challenged the allegation, submitting a letter from her tutor as well as the names of the books and online materials she used to prepare.

"You have to work hard and study and focus to achieve your dreams and I'm not going to let ETS take what I earned away from me," Campbell said. "I studied and I dedicated and I sacrificed so many hours of my time to study for this test so I could get my goal and they're not going to take that away from me."

Crump also called the test culturally biased.

"If she was from a different community and a different neighborhood, would they be more likely to accept it then?" Crump said. "We've always believed this test was culturally biased in itself, now we have to question whether there is implicit bias in even accepting the scores."

The College Board, which works with ETS to administer the SAT, said earlier this week that they can't comment on the specific facts of an individual student's scores that are under review.

"Working with ETS, our test security and administration provider, we place test scores under review when statistical analyses and other factors determine it is necessary," The College Board said in a statement. "When scores are under review, we work directly with students to collect relevant information and make determinations about the validity of the test scores following a comprehensive investigation of the evidence. We do not cancel scores based on a score gain alone; we will only cancel scores after we are confident that there is substantial evidence to do so."

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