I didn’t think there would be any question about this, but the APS board and interim Superintendent Erroll Davis felt it necessary to hold a press conference today to declare that system employees who cheated on state tests will lose their jobs.
“Anyone who cheated or was responsible will not work in front of children in Atlanta again,” said Davis, flanked by the majority of the APS Board of Education.
According to the AJC:
Board members said they expect immediate action once all the information is available, but board chairman Brenda Muhammad said the board will look ahead, “committed to making sure this never, ever happens again.”
Although the board has a lot to discuss and has not seen the report yet, Muhammad said it is focused on moving forward. That “doesn’t mean beating up Beverly Hall,” she said.
Gov. Nathan Deal warned Tuesday morning “there will be consequences” for educators who cheated in Atlanta Public Schools.
In a news conference at the state Capitol, Deal said that three district attorneys, interim Superintendent Erroll Davis and the state educator licensing board are receiving full copies of a detailed report submitted by special investigators that lays out a decade of organized, systemic cheating in the Atlanta district.
Deal did not release the report, instead providing the media with a two-page summary. He said the report names 178 educators, including 38 principals, as participants in cheating. More than 80 confessed. The investigators said they confirmed cheating in 44 of 56 Atlanta schools they examined.
“The report’s findings are troubling, but I am encouraged this investigation will bring closure to problems that existed in the Atlanta public schools,” Deal said. “I am confident that brighter days lie ahead.”
Deal cut questions from the media off after 10 minutes and would not allow the two special investigators present, former Attorney General Mike Bowers and former DeKalb County District Attorney Bob Wilson, to answer any questions.
Deal said the state Attorney General’s office is considering whether Deal’s office should release the full report.
Deal said he could not discuss any district employees the report accuses of wrongdoing or talk about what criminal charges might apply. Asked whether former Superintendent Beverly Hall, who stepped down at the end of her contract Thursday, should be penalized, he said “that is not a determination for me to make.”
–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog