Mayor: APS accreditation loss would be catastrophe

I wanted to direct you to my colleague Henry Unger’s business blog today where Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed and Metro Atlanta Chamber President Sam Williams predict dire consequences to the metro economy if Atlanta Public Schools lose accreditation.

Unger reports:

Both think the entire metro area would suffer if APS loses accreditation — not just the city.

Here’s why: Corporate execs are in the driver’s seat these days when it comes to selecting where to make new investments. The competition among cities is steep. So news of a loss of accreditation in a big school system, both said, would cause many execs to scratch metro Atlanta from their search list.

Reed and Williams met with the accreditation decision-maker, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, and expect a decision soon.

–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

52 comments Add your comment

NWGA teacher

January 11th, 2011
11:02 am

I would do almost anything to keep my child out of APS. I can’t imagine anyone wanting to enroll their children into a school system without accreditation, or into a school system that SHOULD LOSE accreditation. There’s a solution: fix the broken system. Prosecute those who should be prosecuted. Systematically remove the bad apples from the barrel, beginning with those on top.

Westminster, Lovett and Woodward

January 11th, 2011
11:20 am

The Board has caused its own problems. What an embarrassment caused by politics and not focusing on the key job of education – student learning. This is why the private schools in Atlanta thrive. You do not get radical change which is needed unless the stimulus is radical – so in the long run loss of accreditation may do more good than harm.

Vincent Fort

January 11th, 2011
11:33 am

The fact of the matter is that the Metro Chamber of Commerce is responsible for APS being in the accreditation crisis. The Chamber engineered the CRCT investigation cover-up. It functioned as a shadow school board without oversight and accountability while controlling the superintendent. As far as SACS is concerned, it is amazing that the only time they have intervened is when there was a change in board leadership: but not because of the CRCT cover-up, the E-commputer debacle that engendered a congressional investigation, nor cooking the numbers related to graduation rates.

Shar

January 11th, 2011
11:43 am

Representative Fort, the blame for the accreditation crisis lies squarely with the administration of Beverly Hall. Yes, the Metro Chamber has meddled with the Board, but at the invitation – nay, insistence – of Hall. The Board members are a disgrace to themselves, the taxpayers, the city and most of all the students, but primarily because they were happy for Hall to ride roughshod over them. As long as Hall remains at large, there is no expectation of improvement nor of fair public service in return for public money. Trying to push the responsibility for Hall’s corruption to any other body or individual only extends the problem.

justin

January 11th, 2011
11:46 am

So what are they going to do about it? What are within their control? They aren’t suggesting that SACS should let APS keep its accreditation simply because a loss of accreditation is a “catastrophe,” are they?

catlady

January 11th, 2011
11:56 am

The Board and Chamber have NO ONE to blame but themselves, as they have opted into the corruption. So if it has an effect on recruitment to Atlanta, we KNOW WHERE TO LOOK. I sure wouldn’t want a child in the system. It was PATENTLY obvious to anyone of intelligence that the scores were “cooked”, even without knowledge of the cheating scandal. This goes back about a decade, when the “miraculous” improvements started being trumpeted to the press.

It might be a blessing. This problem won’t be fixed until SACS steps in (rather slow to step up to the plate, huh?), until there are indictments and jail time and financial restitution made. With companies looking the other way, the problems with traffic and water and sprawl and crime might be addressed. When we think we are doing well (companies are moving in, things are booming) we have ignored the serious defects in Atlanta.

The Board and Chamber need to bear full responsibility for this fiasco. Corporately, and personally.

Shar: “As long as Hall remains at large”–I spit out my drink at that one!

chillywilly

January 11th, 2011
12:03 pm

As far as I’m concerned, Sam Williams is just as guilty as Beverly Hall. They both should be proscecuted and run out of town. I had a little bit of respect for Kasim Reed, but that little bit is rapidly fading.

It’s a new year and we need some new changes at APS right now, got dammit! I’m calling for the APS Board to suspend Beverly Hall immediately and bring in Dr. Glenn Dowell, Dr. Norman Thomas, Dr. Chuck Fuller or Dr. John Trotter as Superintendent on an interim basis. Get Kathy Augustine, Chandra Burks, Sharon Pitts, Keith Bromery, Millicent Few, Chuck Burbridge, Elwood Duckworth, Nader Sohrab, and Penn Payne out of there NOW!

catlady

January 11th, 2011
12:04 pm

By the way, the press has been complicit in this, as well. It has been discussed on this blog for years that something was not “right”, but the AJC did not do any examination until the last few years, and the state had to get involved to do the erasure analysis. Another example of that “cultism” and lack of critical examination of claims by the “experts” discussed in the previous thread. The AJC needs to decide if it is going to be an investigative news source or a cheering squad, IMHO.

An American Patriot

January 11th, 2011
12:15 pm

Folks, like I’ve been advocating for some time now, the solution is for SACS to vote to keep the APS accredited, but split the system into two pieces…..SAPS and NAPS. That way separate boards could focus their attention on their specific problems without having to think about it all. I know, it’ll never happen…..this whole mess will probably be swept under the rug and BH will laugh all the way to the bank with her very generous pension payout. Mike, I would just ask you and Bob and Gov. Deal to try and not let that happen. Loss of accreditation would be a catastrophe of the very largest order…..Atlanta and the whole metro area would become a disaster area.

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Springdale Park Elementary Parent

January 11th, 2011
1:15 pm

It’s easy to blame our fractious BOE, but after an recent, hourlong conversation with my own elected BOE rep during which she mounted a rambling, inarticulate defense of Beverly Hall’s indefensible conduct, I have to conclude that the Khaatim El-led “Furious Five” coup, messy as it was, was appropriate and necessary.

At some point, you have to take a stand on principle. My BOE rep’s stance is based on personal loyalty to a disgraced con artist, not on loyalty to the district’s children (or the voters who elected her).

Whatever principle drives Khaatim El, it is at least not THAT.

So, Mark Elgart, you’re going to strip SACS accreditation from APS at the moment when a BOE majority has aggressively moved to cleanse APS of the very problems (Beverly Hall’s disgraceful conduct first among them) that led to this meltdown? I don’t think that makes sense. Let our new BOE majority try some CPR before you declare the patient a goner (and nuke the hospital for good measure).

I still have my reservations about Khaatim El still (as other posters here have pointed out, he was awfully slow to develop a spine, as were some of the other “Furious” members) but if I had been stonewalled and marginalized the way he was by the former BOE chair, I’d have reacted the same way.

Teacher for Life

January 11th, 2011
1:53 pm

Just keep your eye on everyone’s tummy. If they seem to be getting larger then we’re lost. They’ve already gone to too many dinners with the status quo crowd. If they look leaner, we really might have a chance for some reforms in APS.

Dr. Craig Spinks /Augusta

January 11th, 2011
2:23 pm

RHETORICAL QUESTION: Would any astute corporate executive confuse SACS accreditation with school-system quality?

Some folks should not be allowed to misconstrue the receipt of an imprimatur from SACS by the APS as an excuse to abandon the complete and open reform of the school system.

Remember that the overwhelming majority of dysfunctional public school systems in our state are accredited by SACS.

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
4:04 pm

As I’ve already said…and the reason I said HIDE and WATCH…

I’ve watched this situation from the inside of North Buckhead Atlanta…and thrown out to the Southside of Atlanta. The “Black” administration has been selling out to the “White” Atlanta Corporations for some time, now.

They are “ALL” trying to figure out how to sweep this under the ABC carnival rug.

It is not about what is “the correct thing to do” or “doing the right thing”…
It is about COVERING-UP what has already been slightly illegally accomplished…through careful tightrope walking the alphabet letters of the laws.

The TEST SCORES from the TOP to the BOTTOM are not legit…isolating one group of tests…(only those with erasures) does not identify the problem. Those on the NORTHSIDE DO NOT ERASE…they give the child the mock answer sheet and fill out the real one behind closed doors…NORTHSIDE PRINCIPALS ARE MUCH MORE SAVVY AT HIDING THEIR CRIMINAL ACTS.

The lower ADMINISTRATORS in the schools ( PRINCIPALS ) have more to hide than the public knows.
The MISUSE OF PUBLIC FUNDS have not been properly investigated. The CRIMINAL CHARGES are still a mystery.REPLACING all those who are questionable will be practically impossible. And the questionable SEGREGATION of children on the NORTHSIDE OF ATLANTA continues to be dodged and manipulated by the TAX BASE OF ATLANTA.

This is a systemic problem…RACE is very much part of the PROBLEM.
To solve this problem you would need to recreate the facade ATLANTA has built.
We are not a city that opens our arms to “ALL RACES”.
WE ARE VERY FRAGMENTED AND THOSE OF “COLOR” have been carefully selected to make sure they are easily manipulated into the OLD ATLANTA way of conducting business.

The connected “people of color” have sold out…to keep their positions of power…THEY KEEP THEIR MOUTHS SHUT…and if they do speak …it is apparent when there is something shady going on (Kasim Reed)

The “elite” business folk of Atlanta will buy their way out of a nasty situation…as they do with their children when they are “in trouble”.

Buckhead ATLANTA will buy the SACS accreditation…to save the business community. Makes no difference if the SCORING IS VALID. They are accustomed to the extra expense it takes to cover-up a mess. They do it all the time with their buddies and children.

And yes …the MEDIA IS PART of the problem…The MEDIA manipulates the information that is printed in the publications in Atlanta. The media is owned by the business associates of this city.

This is why the cover of this month’s ATLANTA MAGAZINE representing Best Schools …says it all…

As I said …HIde and Watch…
This will not be news in the next couple of months…
and ChillyWilly and others will see…
not much will change.

Beverly Hall received what she needed…and the business leaders manipulated and received what they needed. Mission accomplished. Both have their pockets full and a grin on their faces.

Now, carefully watch how they replace this worn out manipulated soul with another one. And those still remaining in APS will train the replacement as to ” HOW IT WORKS “. By the time the public figures it out…and shovels through all the rhetoric they produce…

They’ll hire another SUPERINTENDENT.

aNd ThE wHeELs On ThiS cOrrUPT bUS go Round and Round…

http://www.TopPublicSchoolCorruption.com

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
4:09 pm

And if you want to see more …go to…IF NOT SKIP IT..

http://www.TopPublicSchoolCorruptionAtlanta.com

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
4:22 pm

What is amazing to me is just this…
MOST OF THE FOLKS THAT COMMENT ON THIS SITE…are the same people over and over…
The VALUABLE information given from the individuals participating in this blog is squelched by someone in the Atlanta Journal’s Media.

IF THE AJC WANTED CORRECT NEWS…they would investigate the information individuals have provided through this site. The AJC does not appear to be concerned with uncovering the truth.
The information here is not considered newsworthy. Nobody at the AJC uses anything here to investigate.

The AJC investigations focused on the SOUTHSIDE Atlanta Public Schools. As long as the focus is on those failing schools on this part of town… it is considered newsworthy. The business community now realizes they have used all of “BEVERLY HALL’S TALENTS”. The MEDIA has creatively designed a way to move her out the door.

The same will happen to Kasim Reed…

Old South

January 11th, 2011
4:24 pm

Dr. Spinks the leadership of this ‘city’ is attempting to tie education to corporations because business growth is the one and only worthy quality of this town. If you travel very much, Atlanta is seen as the model for what not do and be much more often than not. However, the growth is respected.

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
4:41 pm

This is a RACE issue…that is carefully woven into the MYSTERY of Atlanta’s connected FOLK.
It is very apparent in the NORTHSIDE SCHOOLS of Atlanta.
Careful Study of the HISTORY of the NORTHSIDE PUBLIC AND PRIVATE SCHOOLS will show you how the RACE issue is still very much part of the TAX BASE OF ATLANTA.

Ignoring these issues of RACE relations are making a festering mess out of this city and for that matter the entire nation.

There is a problem…everyone can see it…and the MEDIA has been told to tone down the RHETORIC.
Not much has changed since 1960…

An American Patriot

January 11th, 2011
5:21 pm

You know, TopPublicSchool, you never did answer my question as to your obsession with the “Race Issue”. What’s your interest in all this…..do you know something that could possibly be of use the the folks investigating the scandal?……or are you just like the rest of us…..Interested, but with no useful information, just opinions and suggestions?…..you feel like opening up?

Burroughston Broch

January 11th, 2011
6:05 pm

One culprit in this mess is unmentioned – former Mayor Franklin. If you remember, she was much involved behind the scenes with the Board, Supt. Hall and the Chamber. Then, after the genie was out of the bottle, she tried her best to put it back in and get back to business as usual, to no avail.

I don’t know whether she will be called to account, but I hope so. In the interim, present Mayor Reed had best stay out of the middle, if his ego will let him.

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
6:59 pm

@ An American Patriot
I am a white Italian/Irish blue eyed male. I think there is some Cherokee Indian in my blood, too. Sorry no Black…but my parents said I always went to the COLORED water fountain at the local SEARS, when I was very young.

I worked at NORTHSIDE Atlanta Public School -Warren T. Jackson Elementary for 13 years.
The last 3 years under the leadership of Principal Reich. (she is still Principal of Jackson)

I think I have first hand knowledge to speak about this topic.

Solution: You would need to cut through all the history of the NORTHSIDE’s ways of doing business.
The history behind the NORTHSIDE SCHOOLS is an embarrassment to me.
I attempted to use the grievance procedures to expose the misuse of public money in this NORTHSIDE SCHOOL. In the discovery of asking for open records to try to figure out what was going on…help to disclose many other issues. My research project made many issues of RACE apparent.

I’ve talked to the connected BLACK FOLK…I’ve talked to the connected WHITE FOLK. Both have confirmed the way the system works. And BOTH WILL DO ANYTHING TO PROTECT THE BEST INTERESTS OF THEIR CHILDREN. If that means keeping your mouth shut and turning a blind eye…They will…

and after I’ve been to the FEDERAL COURT HOUSE in an attempt to challenge the system…and watched how the SYSTEMS IN ATLANTA operate,
I can see how they’ve come to this conclusion.

The FEAR issue of THEM and US…is what makes Atlanta’s Northside operate the way it does.
RACE is part of this problem.

What I say comes from my experiences.
If you’d take the time to view the youtube video…you will see the problem…(it is a lot to try to comprehend)

***Teachers were paid off to keep their mouth’s shut with BONUS PAY, COMPENSATION TIME and many times their absences were not even recorded.

***Principal Reich falsified documents during an investigation and made-up criteria for BONUS CHECKS.

***Principal Reich segregated Hispanic children.

***Principal Reich falsified attendance documents for children and teachers. When enrollment numbers were down…She found children outside of the neighborhood to attend. When teachers were absent … she provided them individually (according to their loyalty to her) to either be afforded comp time to make up their absences or they were not recorded.

***Principal Reich used her authority to misuse the State Professional Development Plans.

***Principal Reich did not conduct the correct use of a consensus to issue PAY FOR PERFORMANCE to teachers at JACKSON ELEMENTARY.

***Principal Reich placed her daughter on the payroll of the school and paid her without the system’s approval.

***Principal Reich asked her teachers to falsify dates on documents to qualify for “PAY FOR PERFORMANCE”

Reich falsified voting procedures which also affected the documentation of AWARDS…AND I COULD GO ON AND ON…

So tell me …Why would ADMINISTRATION OF APS support these unethical issues?
And make every attempt to cover them up in MOCK INVESTIGATIONS within APS and State Professional Standards?

I think Warren Fortson, John Grant, Micheal McGonigal and the NORTHSIDE neighbors can tell you why…

There is not obsession with RACE…The obsession is this…

Why does the neighborhood support this unethical leadership? and why?
WHAT IS THE UNDERLYING ISSUE OF RACE part of the corruption in APS?
Investigate it…open this up for discussion like I did… and you will see how many people start whispering and rolling their eyes with you.

You will need to pull back the layers of corruption…
I already have…I know the parents in NORTHSIDE ATLANTA and I asked uncomfortable questions…and I’ve talked to many of those BLACK FOLK in positions of power…Sadie Denard, Ralph Long, APS Board Members…I asked questions that make them squirm.

There is a RACE issue in APS…and those that are ignoring it…will do nothing to improve the system.
The FEAR of NORTH and SOUTH ATLANTA are still part of this community.

I AM WHITE…my principal was WHITE…and ATLANTA we have a problem, here…
EXAMINE IT…INVESTIGATE…I’LL BE HAPPY TO PROVIDE YOU MY INFORMATION…AND MY ideas and conclusion.

This problem is deep rooted in Atlanta’s culture.

And most on the OUTSIDE can SEE IT…

www,TopPublicSchoolCorruptionAtlanta.com

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
7:06 pm

And others on the outside …don’t want to see it!!

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
7:07 pm

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
7:26 pm

The same NORTHSIDE Business Leaders shut down the BUCKHEAD nightlife when the undesirables started showing up.

The same Northside Business Leaders tried to move all of the NIGHTLIFE of Atlanta to “downtown underground”.

The same NORTHSIDE Business Leaders shut down Lenox Mall when “it became too crowded” during a basketball game…but have no problem with crowds during the HOLIDAYS.

The same NORTHSIDE Business Leaders decided that Phipps Plaza would not have the MARTA RAIL STATION.

The same NORTHSIDE Business Leaders built ATLANTIC STATION without providing a direct MARTA RAIL.

and the list can go on…
Think about it…

East Side Parent

January 11th, 2011
7:33 pm

@ Catlady, your last sentence was dead on. I actually had hubby open a bottle of wine so we could toast on that one.

chillywilly

January 11th, 2011
7:38 pm

@TopPublicSchool – There has to be some avenue of recourse for you. Your evidence is very compelling. Have you contacted NBC’s Dateline or ABC’s 20/20?

Before it’s all said and done, I believe that the current APS top administrators will be exposed for what they are, brought to their knees, and indicted. Sit back and wait for the bombshell.

L

January 11th, 2011
7:38 pm

Atlanta Public schools is a great big joke! The system was in the toilet as far back as J. Jerome Harris and Benjamin S. Canada. Most people cannot afford to live in Atlanta with it’s high taxes, poor transportaion and crime!!!! And to make matters worse and let the truth be told, it is still one of the most racist institutions ever! My mom used to tell me how in the 60’s they struggled with inequity in the school system and racism and it appears it didn’t get any better until the 1970″s. Then as the 70’s and 80’s African American kids grew up graduated from APS, they were well educated, got good jobs, and moved from the city to the suburbs. The Northside schools still get all of the glory and glamour and are over crowded and have waiting lists because everyone knows that they don’t play by the same set of rules. I can say APS used to be a great institution. I have a quick solution to all of this. Let’s do some re-districting. Let the southside and the westside kids come to Buckhead to learn and the Buckhead kids come to the Southside and Westside to learn and let’s see how quickly the tables turn!! It will be real interesting to see if the new Superintendent is going to pick up on this time honored tradition or will that person be drastic and change the program!!!!!!!!!!!

L

January 11th, 2011
7:47 pm

TOP Public School you are right on and said a mouthfull!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Racist, Racist Racist

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
8:40 pm

@ L and Chillywilly

Let’s see…I could fill the AJC’s pages with people I’ve contacted…

They know already…they don’t want to hear it…they want a comfortable life…and they would like for it to go away so they don’t have to deal with it.

Most just smile and say…”you are a good teacher…why don’t you go back to the profession?”
After what I’ve observed from “Professional Standards Commission”… to the parents in political positions that are aware of the problem and continue to keep their mouth’s shut.

I could never return to a classroom.

The news does not want to report this…and the business community in Atlanta Georgia will squelch any word of it.

I’ve tried…They (meaning BLACK & WHITE) ….THEY DO NOT CARE TO DISCUSS THESE ISSUES.
They’ve figured out how to work the system for their current advantage…and that is good enough for them in the present moment. Sounds somewhat selfish…but everyone is trying to survive behind this curtain of lies.

@Chillywilly- I still have HOPE that things will be different for you…

@ L- those children on the NORTHSIDE are not all that smart. Most of the parents are buying their child’s education in the public schools. When they finally get their foot in the PRIVATE schools they will either conform and perform or their children will be “put out”. The parents can manipulate the ADMINISTRATION in these APS NORTHSIDE public schools…but once they go PRIVATE…their power stops at the door.

That is what it’s all about…POWER…PRESTIGE…POLITICS…
TAKE any number of children on the Southside of Atlanta…they can compete…as long as they’re parents have the money to manipulate the ADMINISTRATORS on the NORTHSIDE.

I agree…redraw the lines of these communities…but expect the NORTH / SOUTH war to start again.
These White PTA communities will go to foreign countries as missionaries in their churches…but to help those children in their neighboring communities TO IMPROVE…TO COMPETE… it is disgraceful HOW QUICKLY THEY WILL REVERT TO A 1960′S MENTALITY IN what they will say and WHAT THEY WILL do.

If the community was really serious about raising the bar…and helping…they could figure out how to do it “correctly”.

To start with …they have to honestly admit there is a problem.

I pray for a better day…but I have seen it for what it is worth…BAD…and the justice system ignored it.

I don’t like what I’ve seen.
I writing on this blog as my last attempt to disclose what I know to be “TRUE”

But, after I see what Governor “DEAL” does with APS…
I am finished with trying to tell what I know.

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
8:54 pm

@ cHILLYWILLY

I drove to Washington, DC…because no lawyer in Atlanta would touch this case…

it has been reported to CNN and Atlanta Journal…
What do you think?

Maybe it is not newsworthy.
Most people tell me it is nothing new…it’s like this everywhere?
The majority of people say…so what?
I think most in positions of power like it this way. It seems to be the norm.
I THINK MOST OF OUR SYSTEMS have failed at demanding honesty, integrity and ethics.

LOOK AT IT THIS WAY…the majority put NATHAN DEAL in office…

What Goes Around Comes Around

January 11th, 2011
8:59 pm

@TopPublicSchool

You need to contact John Sherman, President, Fulton County Taxpayers Foundation, 309 E. Paces Ferry Road, Suite 607, Atl 30305, 404-869-6066.

If Mr. Sherman has any guts, he would take this on.

Taxpayers should be pissed!!!!!!

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
9:06 pm

I taught in a elementary classroom for most of my life. These ADULT games are not my specialty.
I was on the bottom level trying to influence and mold honesty and integrity into young children.
When I came out of the classroom to challenge these issues…THE ADULT GAMES. It became apparent to me, THAT I was in a fog as to what was really going on in the world.

WHILE I WAS BUSY TEACHING the basic SKILLS for the grade level I was assigned …honesty, integrity and ethics were eroding from our leaders.

If our society does not instill these qualities in our current ADMINISTRATORS…any efforts to teach basic skills are a waste of time.

L- a History Lesson in APS!!!!!

January 11th, 2011
9:27 pm

@ TopPublic School : You know ..It’s really so sad because I had a connection with APS in so many ways. My father attented David T. Howard one of the first African American schools in atlanta, my mom attented Washington High, my brothers sisters and almost everyone I know attended APS. I used to work for APS and so did my husband. I used to live in Atlanta for so many years and when I had kids my husband wanted to raise them in Cobb County because things were not as they used to be in Atlanta. I am a Grady Baby, I attented NPU meetings, bought food and clothing for my students on the Southside, gave rides home, sat in parents living room, walked the streets of Bowen Homes when I worked for Camp Best Friends (a summer camp in Atlanta.) If anyone has had a real investment in Atlanta it is I. But 2 yrs ago I had to divorce myself from Atlanta because just as you say “No one cares about the real situation” My father was wise. He used to say the best thing that happened to African Americans in Atlanta was integration. He said it made Blacks stronger. They opened their own schools, businesses, and fostered a love in their own communities. They strenghtened communities like Collier Heights, Adamsville, Cascade and many more. Some of the students in these areas were the top in the nation! They developed a sense of pride in their race. Your teacher’s kids went to your school. You would see your teachers in the grocery store! APS was a great school system! But African American in Atlanta somehow experienced a kind of “white fight from the city” Some stayed until the 90″s but in the 2000’s they moved to areas like Ellenwood and Dekalb. Some areas like the South Fulton area and Cascade area try to exist as a potential home for some of the elite blacks. But as far as the inner city is concerned it is a clear racial divide that has taken back over. Parental support in inner city is low!! School Reform Models have replaced traditional and good authentic teaching methodologies! Morale was low with Atlanta Teachers way before the cheating scandal.They’re talked to like dogs and belittled about student achievement. Older teachers who don’t go along with the plan are pushed out! The youg ones who don’t have a clue are brought in!! They have cheated their Special Ed populations. To add injury to insult with gentrification of many of the downtown historic neighborhoods I just don’t see how it will be the Phoenix and rise from the ashes as far as its African American community is concerned!!!!! African Americans of yester-year contributed some great things to the city!That Era has ended!! The Mayor and everyone else knows this!!!

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
9:32 pm

I contacted John Sherman, President, Fulton County Taxpayers Foundation…MANY YEARS AGO.

Honestly, THE TAXPAYERS OF THIS COMMUNITY SHOULD READ THIS …They should be pissed…
and they should CONTACT HIM.

Most of the Northside have their hands over their eyes and are peeking out the cracks and telling me to PLEASE go away.

John Sherman is on East Paces Ferry Road…exactly two streets over from Mt. Paran Road where Warren T. Jackson Elementary sits. They know all about this. If they are pissed…nobody seems to care enough to have the backbone to do anything about it. GO TO THE SCHOOL AND ASK SOME QUESTIONS. The Atlanta Journal has enough information to send a reporter…Do you think they will?
I don’t think so.

I sacrificed my profession to stand up and challenge what I thought was wrong.

IF the community does not see anything wrong with this situation…and they are not pissed off…and have not already contacted him…Why should I? And after “DEAL” makes a mockery out of this GBI investigation…Why should I CARE. I tried…

They want me to go away…The principal has been supported by this community. If they value this as their TOP NORTHSIDE SCHOOL. Then who am I to complain?

The Tax payers on the NORTHSIDE …need to complain.

Look at the video…they already attempted to humiliate me to this entire community. My reputation was ruined within 6 weeks. For the last 10 years…I’ve been labeled the “unstable one”.

The NORTHSIDE COMMUNITY NEEDS TO STEP UP TO THE PLATE. Call for a proper investigation!

What Warren Fortson and John Grant actually do with the information they were provided in this case ?#$#%$%

And what did APS do?…#$@#%$^$%
READ THE INFORMATION, I’VE PROVIDED.
Do the necessary research…All the information is there…in the video…from the mouth of the accused.

The public is the judge and jury in this case…view it …judge it for yourself…and if you feel like it is offensive…call John Sherman, President, Fulton County Taxpayers Foundation…and complain. UNTIL SOMEONE ELSE BESIDES ME…sees something is wrong here…IT REALLY HAS NO VALUE.

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
9:51 pm

@ L -A HISTORY LESSON OF APS

Yes, these are exactly the stories I’ve heard.
How do we come together to discuss these issues in a constructive way to improve the corrupt system?

This has not been an easy lesson for me. I came to ATLANTA from NORTH CAROLINA…thinking this was the progressive South. I was proud to be White working in a System where the leaders were Black.
I valued this! I thought these were the people that would come running to help when they saw injustices… I was sadly mistaken. They hid and it took me 10 years of research to figure out why they were hiding.

I spoke out…trying to get answers in a system that there were no rules for getting answers.
And now they want to tell teachers to come forward and tell what they know!

My God! All those that know the other 7 teachers and myself who were affected by this case…no better than to speak up!!! and those left at JACKSON that know this story…they will not speak as to what they know. They’ve seen the consequences.

I want to warn anyone within APS…Don’t say a word….bow down…keep your head down.
This problem is bigger than it seems.
Don’t think they will protect you…They won’t.

This problem is deep rooted…and most like yourself…know how deep the roots go.

L- a History Lesson in APS!!!!!

January 11th, 2011
10:01 pm

You want to know the crazy part just to make you laugh in light of a bad situation. Some of these same administrators who are crazy as ***& went to school in Atlanta and I would swear on my mother and father’s grave that they know APS wasn’t like this when they were in school and that they know this isn’t right! They have been brain-washed to think that they are actually closing the achievement gap with inner city kids. Money drives a lot of this! These adminsitrators are very well paid!!!!!!!! I just hate that people who don’t know the History of APS think that this is the way its always been and it hasn’t!! I have seen many adminstrators also retire because they refuse to go along with the corruption!!!!!!!!

L- a History Lesson in APS!!!!!

January 11th, 2011
10:16 pm

Honestly this all started with NCLB .Fedreal funds…. federal dollars! No student achievement!!! Then we close your school!! It’s a no brainer!!!!!!!!! But no one really looked at honestly is this possible to make school achievement in a years time the right way!!! Come on its like trying to pull a rabbit out of your hat. Take kids who are grade levels behind and put them on level in a year …. even the ones in Special Ed …yeah right! Many , almost most…APS teachers work hard! They tutor, teach.. tutor and teach and it’s shameful that after they endure these grueling days they cose to cheat!!! How about the AJC do an article on the schools that were supposed to be cheating… some of the same schools made AYP in 2010 and they didn’t even test their onwn students.. “how bout them apples “…AJC!!!!!

TopPublicSchool

January 11th, 2011
10:36 pm

Believe me …I HAVE LAUGHED MY WAY THROUGH THIS BAD SITUATION…

I laughed when I left the Federal Court House after watching Buckhead prop up Dorsey Hopson to make it look like they did not manipulate 3 Federal Judges in this case,

My attorney shook his head. We were in the same courtroom where Martin Luther King, Jr sat to challenge the issues of his time. I felt honored. I carried this as far as I could take it…and the truth was placed in a box for two years before I decided to post it on youtube.

If White NORTHSIDE Folk and BLACK Folk in the Atlanta Public School System value this leadership…I am proud to say I am not part of it…

I laugh at the AWARDS they’ve claimed that make them SCHOOLS OF EXCELLENCE.

When I left the courtroom…I took my attorney to the Martin Luther King Center.
Although the photos are black and white…and those pictures are part of my past…I am sad to say…my experiences in ATLANTA PUBLIC SCHOOLS…are not something I am proud of…I lived them in living color.

The scariest moment for me was when APS stormed my doctor’s offices for my medical records. (of which I would have gladly provided…if they would have asked…

I provided my complete medical records along with a psychological evaluation) It scared me to think how “ABOVE” THE LAW THEY THOUGHT THEY WERE to believe they could walk into doctor’s offices and demand my medical records.

IF THIS IS THE EDUCATED ELITE of Atlanta Public Schools…
I’ll claim the title of the stupidest, sorriest, slackest, laziest, teacher in the state of Georgia.
BUT, I can tell you all my evaluations will not indicate anything less than superior.

The APS SYSTEM is corrupt…and if ATLANTA’S NORTHSIDE TAX-PAYING “base” CITIZENS CAN SEND THEIR CHILDREN TO warren t. jackson elementary UNDER the current leadership…so be it!

Bless them…and let it be so.

L- a History Lesson in APS!!!!!

January 11th, 2011
10:47 pm

WhoaH!! So sorry to hear you were treated this way!!!!!! In many ways you were a martyr.. your situation is indeed like many stories in the segregated South more than 200 yrs ago in Dr. Martin Luther Kings time!! He too being a proud graduate of APS at the age of 15! My Daddy used to say people have a way of hitting a brick wall. I hope APS has hit that wall atleast for the kids sake. I don’t know anything about what went on in the Northside but I feel sorry for the other areas because many of these parents don’t know what the heck is going on. They still think the measure of a good school is a test score and worksheets for homework!!!

An American Patriot

January 12th, 2011
8:48 am

From chilly willy – @TopPublicSchool – There has to be some avenue of recourse for you. Your evidence is very compelling. Have you contacted NBC’s Dateline or ABC’s 20/20?

TopPublicSchool, I hope you’re successful in your quest for whatever it is you seek as regards to the APS; however, in reading all your posts, I see a whole lot of allegations, but do you have proof/evidence to support those allegations? It seems to me that everyone you’ve talked with who are connected and important individuals, view you as a crackpot, as most view me :) ; however, you’re on a much higher crackpotism level than I……You’re shouting from the mountaintop and nobody’s listening to you, yet you continue to spout your accusations even though those people have written you off. Have you talked with Mike and Bob? and if you haven’t, maybe you should…..if you have, what did they say…..oh, I’m sorry, you’re probably under a gag order. One man crusades don’t usually go anywhere and trying to fight the Buckhead Boys ain’t gonna get you nowhere. Split ‘em in two pieces – SAPS and NAPS and see who comes out ahead…..TopPublicSchool, this issue will be here long after you and I are dead and gone…..

Top School

January 12th, 2011
2:08 pm

@An American Patriot

I have no problem with a healthy debate on the challenges…but

I was written off the day I filed the grievance.
This is an embarrassment to the White Folk that know me…and the Black Folk that know me. I am just the messenger…caught up in the middle of their mess.

This is not about me…This is about the root of the problem. Neither side can explain ANY justification for DRAMA this PRINCIPAL created when a grievance was filed.

This sociopathic leader created a paper trail in her attempts to make me into a terrorist
against the school. The APS system allowed her to create a hostile, fearful work environment for all the teachers on staff and her position as PRINCIPAL made the parents fearful of what she would do in retaliation against them with private school applications IF THEY DID NOT SUPPORT HER ACTIONS.

There is testimony in this case that supports all of this.
These are not allegations. The teachers at the school testified and refused to answer questions during their depositions because they feared losing there jobs.

Principal Reich became paranoid about getting caught without the documentation to support her use inappropriate use of public funds and recreated the documentation during the investigation.

These are not allegations. She states what she did on each Youtube clip.
The written supporting documents are in the case that went to court.
I could make PDF documents to link it all together…But HONESTLY …IF YOU CAN’T HEAR IT FROM THE HORSE’S MOUTH and put it all together. I am wasting my time.
The judges are not interested in these petty issues.
They narrowly applied the law…STATING …YOU WERE NOT FIRED.

They are right…I was not fired… and the judges did not look at any of the other retaliation issues or information that was disclosed in discovery.
I BRING THIS INFORMATION TO YOU…SO YOU CAN ANALYZE WHAT you THINK IS THE PROBLEM…

I already know what the problems are in Atlanta Public Schools.
I experienced it.

These are the problems
.
$$$$$
There is not a grievance procedure in APS that protects the teacher if possible criminal issues are brought to the table for discussion.

$$$$
The systems in APS – OIR did not properly investigate. In this case …they only interviewed the accused.

$$$$
The Professional Standards Commission did not properly investigate…Again, they interviewed the person accused of wrong-doing and did not evaluate the testimony in this case.

I never shouted from the mountain top…
I made my case through the legal system one step at a time…
The good ole boys…took care of all of this.
And I laughed when I watched them prop up Former BLACK APS Attorney Dorsey Hopson to represent their WHITE dirty work.

The current system the Elite Wealthy White FOLK use to solve their NORTHSIDE challenges are the ENVY of the Connected Elite BLACK FOLK that are trying to stay in the LOOP of the illusion of SUCCESS.

BOTH OF THESE ENTITIES see the problem…and BOTH are PART OF THE PROBLEM.
They do not want to hear it.
This case has all the supporting documents to show proof of this.
Any PRINCIPAL on the SOUTHSIDE of Atlanta that attempted to FALSIFY DOCUMENTS, SEGREGATE STUDENTS, FALSIFY VOTING PROCEDURES for Pay for Performance, tell teachers to gather parent signatures using different colored ink pens to back track and make it appear that the project took place, refer to neighboring children as CHILDREN FROM THE OTHER SIDE OF THE TRACKS…. AND ON…AND ON…It makes most people’s head spin as to how much is documented…sworn testimonies, a proper paper trail, what more someone provide?

This NORTHSIDE principal has the community and the APS system in the palm of her hand…USING FEAR AND INTIMIDATION TACTICS with all those involved….She would be dismissed for just ONE of the issues documented. Many have been dismissed for less.

In closing I will tell you…Kasim Reed’s statement ” APS accreditation loss would be catastrophe” is designed to prepare you for Governor Deal’s cover-up of the APS issues. White Northside and Black APS Administration want it to remain this way. THIS IS THE WAY IT WORKS IN ATLANTA GEORGIA. And, if you don’t think so …do the research… interview those involved…ask Beverly Hall and Kathy Augustine why they SUPPORTED this leadership on the NORTHSIDE of ATLANTA…

Take one issue…just one issue…would have disgraced most.

As the AJC MEDIA and Kasim Reed make headlines like “APS accreditation loss would be catastrophe” …they are setting the public up for their rhetoric to twist the issues.

THE CATASTROPHE IS THIS…why would the public let APS get away with this mess without filing criminal charges against those involved?

Too many sociopathic public/business officials are creating catastrophes and we are allowing them to walk away with a smile on their faces and their pockets full.

Nobody seems to hold those in powerful positions responsible for their corrupt actions.

And our children are modeling this behavior…

When will the public say ENOUGH ALREADY.

An American Patriot

January 12th, 2011
2:54 pm

@TopPublicSchool, now that’s what I wanted to see you say; however, being that the APS is corrupt as well as the City of Atlanta, you’re probably not gonna get anywhere. And you’re right, this whole thing will be swept under the rug because if the APS loses accreditation, son, there goes the city and the metro area…..everybody will be moving out…..you think there’s a lot of “for sale” signs now, you ain’t seen nuthin’ yet……there’s not enough private schools to handle all the students. This is one of those cases where the governor should step in and try to right the ship…..it’s plain that the APS BOE does not have the will nor the capability to do what’s right. Lot’s of luck, buddy :)

L

January 12th, 2011
3:03 pm

I have never and I mean never seen anyone take on an APS administrators and win! I know co-workers who have tried in court for various issues only to find themselves, fired, transferred, or demoted! No one but an employee or former employee will ever understand your situation! That is why many teachers are reveling in the Feds getting to the adminstrastors that have been accused of cheating because many of them feel that they are getting their just do’s. However there are many that still remain!

L

January 12th, 2011
3:06 pm

Ask the South Fulton County teachers! They don’t play around! They have a local school council that consist ofo parents who makes sure that their administrators don’t get too comfortable in their positions. They will replace you in a hearbeat as an administrator!

Atlanta Public Schools

January 13th, 2011
7:48 am

[...] For APS, Bromery said a plan to make up snow days won't …APS closes on Wednesday WABEMayor: APS accreditation loss would be catastrophe Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog)all 3 news articles » Jan 12, 2011 [...]

Raquel Morris

January 13th, 2011
10:29 am

@ Senator Fort,

You are absolutely right about the Chamber of Commerce’s responsibility for this mess, along with Beverly Hall, of course. However, your friend, the Mayor, has been in lockstep with the Chamber as well.

Mayor Reed has never publicly criticized Beverly Hall, the shadow Board of Education run by the Chamber of Commerce, or shown ANY leadership over the question of what should happen to APS.

When are you going to call Mayor Reed out for being beholden to the Chamber of Commerce?

Top School

January 13th, 2011
1:26 pm

@ Fort
The fact of the matter is that the Metro Chamber of Commerce is responsible for APS being in the accreditation crisis. The Chamber engineered the CRCT investigation cover-up. It functioned as a shadow school board without oversight and accountability while controlling the superintendent. As far as SACS is concerned, it is amazing that the only time they have intervened is when there was a change in board leadership: but not because of the CRCT cover-up, the E-computer debacle that engendered a congressional investigation, nor cooking the numbers related to graduation rates.

THE PUBLIC HAS TO RISE UP TO DEMAND this to change.
Individuals caught up in their mess of politics and pay-offs are the scape-goats used to keep you eye off the problem… Beverly Hall is just another pawn in their game of corruption.

Native Atlantan

January 15th, 2011
9:26 am

The Board of Education needs to become the leaders they were elected to be, put Dr. Hall and Dr. Augustine on leave immediately because of the distraction this whole thing has become. DeKalb BOE did it with Dr. Lewis. The students and school based employees are the ones being harmed by the continuation of Dr. Hall and Dr. Augustine in their positions. The school board needs to focus on the hear and now and stop being so concerned about finding the next superintendent. They need to wake up and see what is going on (or not happening) on a daily basis. The continuing destruction of the school system should be the focus. The school board has been silent about the damning AJC article of December 20th. That article should have been enough to put them on leave immediately. Why were they not as outraged as I was? I am an APS graduate and have children in APS and pay a huge amount in Atlanta/Fulton County property taxes to fund this system. When is the board going to lead?

Native Atlantan

January 15th, 2011
9:26 am

sorry, here and now

The Parent Advocate

January 15th, 2011
1:21 pm

I have not been a writer of blogs, but I do read what others are saying. Too long Atlanta has been said to be a city “too busy to hate”, but I agree and have asked these questions for years to Dr. Hall of the disparities that exist between the north and side sides of town. If you are use to eating from the McDonald’s menu, how will you ever know you are being fed crumbs, you only know when you start to visit and explore fine cuisine. The Atlanta Board of Education, the superintendent have all contributed to the status quo of Atlanta and to no avail has been a haven for the “haves” and a hell for the “have nots”.

I am about trying to do something about the problem and have worked in my community to empower parents and community members about the promise of education in Atlanta. To no avail, it has been an arduous task to get business leaders and elected officials to join the crusade to fight for education for ALL Atlanta’s children. You are totally correct, some are too concerned about what this corrupt system is doing for them personally and not enough of a collective view point. When will we realize that every child who is not educated properly affect all of us. But I guess that is the plan, jails aren’t being built to be empty!