Valedictorian says school changed GPA to allow white student top - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Valedictorian says school changed GPA to allow white student top honors

Jasmine Shepard (Source: Facebook) Jasmine Shepard (Source: Facebook)
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) -

An African-American girl from Mississippi is suing her school district after she earned co-valedictorian honors.

Jasmine Shepard and her family said Cleveland High School awarded co-valedictorian honors in 2016 for the first time in school's 110-year history.

The lawsuit accuses Cleveland School District of breaking with school policy to ensure that the school would still have a white person as valedictorian.

Cleveland High School has never had an African-American valedictorian. However, in 2016, Shepard said she earned the highest GPA in her graduating class. 

That would normally entitle a student to be the valedictorian.

However, Shepard's legal team said the school deliberately changed the way it calculates GPA in order to create a tie for highest GPA in the class.

Former students and Cleveland residents said they're interested in learning what a judge says about the case.

"I hope if they had the same GPA that they need to share it, but if they didn't, the one with the higher GPA should've gotten it," Jeremy Vardaman said.

Cleveland School District's lawyer called the suit "frivolous," but could not expand on details in the case.

Cleveland School District representatives did not reply to WMC Action News 5's request for comment on this story.

Earlier this year, a federal judge demanded the school district desegregate. A move coming after a decades-long legal battle.

Below is a copy of the lawsuit the Shepard family filed against Cleveland School District:

Copyright 2017 WMC Action News 5. All rights reserved.

  • NEWSMore>>

  • Brett Favre was a guest speaker at the Gulf Coast Coaching Clinic

    Brett Favre was a guest speaker at the Gulf Coast Coaching Clinic

    Thursday, February 22 2018 5:50 PM EST2018-02-22 22:50:13 GMT

    Between 500 to 600 high school football coaches from throughout the Deep South have converged at the Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino for the 55th annual Gulf Coast Coaching Clinic, which concludes on Friday.  Brett Favre had the high school coaches laughing when he took the podium Thursday morning.

    More >>

    Between 500 to 600 high school football coaches from throughout the Deep South have converged at the Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino for the 55th annual Gulf Coast Coaching Clinic, which concludes on Friday.  Brett Favre had the high school coaches laughing when he took the podium Thursday morning.

    More >>
  • Stone County schools disrupted by threats of violence

    Stone County schools disrupted by threats of violence

    Thursday, February 22 2018 4:43 PM EST2018-02-22 21:43:14 GMT
    An alleged school shooting threat rattled students within the Stone County School District. (Photo Source: WLOX)An alleged school shooting threat rattled students within the Stone County School District. (Photo Source: WLOX)
    (Photo Source: WLOX)(Photo Source: WLOX)

    The 15-year-old suspect police believe is responsible has been sent to a juvenile detention center in Natchez. Officials say he could also be charged as an adult.

    More >>

    The 15-year-old suspect police believe is responsible has been sent to a juvenile detention center in Natchez. Officials say he could also be charged as an adult.

    More >>
  • Suspects wanted for attempted ATM theft

    Suspects wanted for attempted ATM theft

    Thursday, February 22 2018 4:15 PM EST2018-02-22 21:15:37 GMT
    A suspect in the attempted ATM theft in Saucier, MS. (Photo Source: Harrison Co. Sheriff's Office)A suspect in the attempted ATM theft in Saucier, MS. (Photo Source: Harrison Co. Sheriff's Office)
    A suspect in the attempted ATM theft in Saucier, MS. (Photo Source: Harrison Co. Sheriff's Office)A suspect in the attempted ATM theft in Saucier, MS. (Photo Source: Harrison Co. Sheriff's Office)

    Harrison County Sheriff's Office is looking for the suspects involved with an attempted ATM theft in Saucier. 

    More >>

    Harrison County Sheriff's Office is looking for the suspects involved with an attempted ATM theft in Saucier. 

    More >>
Powered by Frankly