Skip to main content

Ousted Washburn principal denies cheating allegations

  • Author:
  • Updated:

The former Washburn High School principal who was removed from his position by the Minneapolis school district amid test-tampering allegations is speaking up about the claims against him.

Patrick Exner was the target of an anonymous email sent last week that alleged Exner changed answers for three students on the state's GRAD reading test while he served as associate director of Ubah Medical Academy in Hopkins.

"The allegation that I changed students' answers on state assessment tests is absolutely false," Exner said in an editorial piece obtained by the Southwest Minneapolis Patch.

Exner was hired to replace former Washburn Principal Carol Markham-Cousins, who was removed from her post in April after turmoil at the school surrounding the replacement of the school’s athletic director.

"I am saddened that I will not be the leader who restores harmony and excellence within Washburn's halls and the greater community," Exner wrote. "I reflect on the events of the last two weeks in utter dismay that under the veil of anonymity an individual was given the power to disrupt the plans for leadership at Washburn High School and leave me with an uncertain future."

Minneapolis Public Schools has not said whether Exner has been fired.

Assistant Principal Linda Conley is serving as interim principal. The district will launch a national search for a permanent replacement later in the school year.

The Patch has Exner's full editorial.

Next Up


Charges: Armed man made death threats at Minneapolis LGBTQ bar

The man allegedly used derogatory terms while threatening to kill someone.


FDA pulls last COVID-19 monoclonal antibody treatment as new variants rise

A therapy used to treat more than 11,000 Minnesotans is no longer authorized amid a surge in the latest COVID-19 variants.

Austin Robert LeClaire

Charges: Plymouth man shot girlfriend in head after birthday party

The 23-year-old victim is in critical condition as of Friday.


State announces $2.5M in grants for child care providers

Child care providers in roughly a dozen communities will receive funds to help grow the supply of affordable, quality child care.


Probe of Golden Valley police uncovers racism, alleged misconduct

One officer was terminated for alleged racist comments and violations of state law.

blowing snow

Blowing snow Friday in Minnesota; will it snow next week?

Winds could gust up to 50 mph Friday afternoon and night.

Deer hunting blaze orange

To combat CWD, late-season deer hunting announced for 9 areas of MN

The special hunts will be held between Dec. 16 and 18.


COVID levels rising in wastewater; BQ.1 now dominant

BQ.1 is the new dominant subvariant in Twin Cities wastewater.

Screen Shot 2022-12-02 at 11.43.05 AM

Keith Ellison, other AGs settle with CarMax over recall disclosures

As part of the settlement, CarMax now must disclosure open recalls online and on the lot.

police lights squad car

Man kidnaps 2-year-old daughter in St. Paul, crashes after pursuit in Minneapolis

The incident involved both police departments in Minneapolis and St. Paul.

police lights

Boys aged 15, 16 arrested after shooting of teen in Woodbury

The victim suffered non-life-threatening gunshot wounds.