The Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow, or ECOT, isn’t a traditional public school, but like all public schools, classes are supposed to be taught by licensed teachers.
Former ECOT teacher Marilyn Hiestand was fired after school officials discovered that she had paid a former student to teach her class and grade assignments.
“We did our own internal investigation and found that the teacher had actually given her username and password to someone who is not authorized to be interacting with students,” said Nick Wilson of ECOT.
Wilson said that the former student taught lessons, graded papers and had access to students’ personal information.
Hiestand, who taught from her home in Hillsboro, was fired. According to her personnel file, she offered a response to the situation.
“I hired a former student to assist me. I didn’t realize this was a hiring offense,” Hiestand stated.
ECOT officials said that they have changed the way the school operates to make sure something like that does not happen again. More classes are taught via webcam.
“Also, our principals monitor better than they did back in 2008-09,” Wilson said. “We think the likelihood of this occurring under our current principals’ watch is very unlikely to happen.
Hiestand was not immediately available for comment.
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