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Clarksdale teacher accused of cheating agrees to give up license, will cooperate with inquiry


JACKSON, Mississippi — A Clarksdale teacher admits she cheated on state tests and will give up her Mississippi teaching license for at least two years.

In an agreement with the Mississippi Department of Education, Frances Smith-Kemp will voluntarily surrender her license and cooperate with the larger state inquiry into cheating in the Clarksdale district. She admits breaking state law, but does not admit to criminal liability.

The agreement was announced Tuesday before a panel of the state teacher licensure commission, which was holding a hearing on misconduct charges against Smith-Kemp.

The state will recommend reinstating Smith-Kemp's license to the commission after two years if she cooperates.

Testimony Monday showed Smith-Kemp pointed out wrong answers to students during math and language arts testing in 2013, until they arrived at the right answer.

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