CRCT cheating fallout: Former APS leader put on paid leave after one day on job in Texas

The APS cheating scandal took a toll in suburban Dallas last night after a school board that recently hired former Atlanta deputy superintendent Kathy Augustine met with her behind closed doors for nearly six hours. After the session, the board of the 9,000-student DeSoto school district.placed Augustine  on indefinite paid leave effective immediately.

According to the story in the AJC this morning:

Board members and Augustine, who started her first day Monday, refused to answer questions after the meeting and quickly left the room after she read a lengthy prepared statement.

“It was a mutual decision for the best interest of DeSoto ISD children,” said board president Warren Seay, who added that Augustine would stay on paid leave “until the process worked itself out.”

In an emailed statement after the meeting, Seay wrote, “”We are working to resolve the issues related to Dr. Augustine in a prudent manner that represents the best interests of DeSoto ISD school children. To that end, we anticipate a swift resolution.”

Augustine declined to answer questions after the meeting about why she agreed to go on paid leave. She said, “The answer to your questions are in the statement.”

After the meeting, trustee Sandra Wheeler, who voted against hiring Augustine in May, said, “I want us to move forward and do what’s best for the kids.”

When asked how she felt about the decision, she said, “It’s hard to say.”

Augustine entered DeSoto on her first day amid growing opposition over what she might have known about cheating on state tests in Georgia. She was greeted Monday night by protesters outside district headquarters calling for her to resign. Nearly 75 people filled a cramped DeSoto school board meeting to hear whether Augustine would remain in charge.

–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

36 comments Add your comment

not telling

July 12th, 2011
9:21 am

Wow. A board that has done more good in one day than APS and DCSS combined in years…

funny

July 12th, 2011
9:24 am

LOL… seems this board got wise too late. Augustine must have refused to resign and now the DeSoto board knows it made a huge mistake in hiring her. First day on the job and her true colors come out (no pun intended).

justbrowsing

July 12th, 2011
9:30 am

Consider all the people who have lost their jobs because their issues were ignored and they were thrown to the wolves with no support or resolution to their situation. This needs to stop- and not just in APS.

amazed

July 12th, 2011
9:38 am

I suspect they don’t have enough yet to fire her according to her contract, so they’re working on a settlement. The Dallas articles yesterday questioned whether she had actually lied to the school board, since she did tell them there was an investigation.

Former SPARK parent

July 12th, 2011
9:39 am

Kathy Augustine will never work a day in that district. She could only return if exonerated, and, weirdly enough, she could only be exonerated if she were charged of a crime and acquitted. (Otherwise, a cloud of suspicion will always hang over her head about the willfully inaccurate test-score letter she signed, which is a crime under Georgia law and a fraud against the federal government (and the feds don’t play).

But if and when she IS charged, the DeSoto ISD will fire her, because they will then have adequate political (read: racial) cover to do so. (They were too weak-willed do it yesterday, hence the “paid leave,” because to fire her yesterday would have been to acknowledge their mistake in hiring her in the first place).

Was it worth it, Kathy? Was it worth it, Beverly? Humiliation on a national stage? The loss of your careers? The loss of awards, the loss of the respect of your peers? The realization that you will likely never be allowed to work with children again? (That would make me very sad).

I’ve already forgotten about these untalented fools. I don’t even care if we get back the money they stole from us. Let’s have the mother of all bake sales and make it an annual fundraiser. We’ll call it “Cupcakes with a Conscience.” As opposed to, you know, the other kind.

David Sims

July 12th, 2011
9:39 am

Paid leave is hardly “fallout.” It’s more like a vacation. You don’t have to do any work, but you still get the money. Grocery store bag boys under suspicion for being rude to the supermarket customers don’t go on “paid leave”; they get fired. BLAM! Gone. Why should it be any different for people whose salaries are larger?

Charles

July 12th, 2011
10:02 am

The board is the problem. Augustine informed Desoto of the issues in Atlanta before they hired her. She was flown in several times, allowed her to stay in expensive hotels and run up schools bills, they traveled her around the school system, and now to pin her as the villian? I don’t think so. If this was a big issue (cheating) and it is, and she admitted she was not implicated, and they don’t have any proof (they don’t) just folks opinion of “She did not or should have known,” then again the board is the issue.

So now they have to pay her while not working, pay legal fees, and I’m sure her contract has buy-out clause where they will pay her some dollars handsomely. There is nothing in the reports that names her directly, only subjective, interpretive language.

Which means Desoto will pay a lot for this: fire her or she resigns with lots of $$$$$$$; look for another sup$$$$$$$; no leadership$$$$$$$; lie about what they didn’t know$$$$$$,,,,,,,,

Shar

July 12th, 2011
10:03 am

“The answers to your questions are in the statement.” Boy howdie, doesn’t that sound just like the stone wall and refusal to engage that APSstakeholders have run into for years with Augustine? Lucky DeSoto, to get rid of her before she can infect their system.

atlmom

July 12th, 2011
10:32 am

charles: it was no secret, even before the report. when you’re looking for a high level employee, it’s not surprising that you as the employer would pay for hotels, a few trips, etc. She did move somewhere – she needed to find a place to live, etc.
ALSO does she have kids? They have to go to school somewhere. So she was moved to a new city where arguably she didn’t live…and now she has no job. Again, it was no secret she was being investigated. it’s not like it came out of the blue.
I would just like to go on ‘paid administrative leave,’ too, though…

Yeah buddy

July 12th, 2011
10:34 am

I thought everybody who is anybody from Atlanta I thought was entitled to a second chance.

funny

July 12th, 2011
10:38 am

@charles

its not the cheating that will catch her in the end; its fireing the whistleblowers…”a wall of silence that was created by an atmosphere of secrecy and intimidation”… I dont know all the Federal laws involving pretecting employees but thats what I feel is going to bring ppl up on charges.

funny

July 12th, 2011
10:38 am

in the affirmative, get action!

July 12th, 2011
11:02 am

She could be back in her office today, and with a pay big raise, if she would just accuse them of “systemic bias and institutional racism that targets members of the vulnerable and beloved community of color, like me”.

Apsteacherfor5years

July 12th, 2011
11:04 am

I am so sick of this notion of paid administrative leave. Can’t those implicated in cheating do custodial work, cafeteria work, drive buses, make photo copies, etc until due process is granted to them?

SHOW ME!

July 12th, 2011
12:54 pm

:) Luke 12:48 “But the one who did not know, and did what deserved a beating, will receive a light beating. Everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required, and from him to whom they entrusted much, they will demand the more. “From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked”
That being said or quoted, someone or some of the people did “sell-out” I declare “divine order” in the midst of this storm. I had an APS Principal to lie on me and say I kicked a child. The School Board, Supt, Exec Directors, or Professional Standards People did NOTHING after I reported it. They say, oops, this is not in our jurisdiction and destroyed the files. I was thrown under the bus. But I’m still standing strong, because I know there is a God. I applaud Vincent Fort and his group for finally taking a stand against SAC’S- and the Mark Elgert. Please get a civil rights investigation underway. Who does SACS report to? This is just a political Agency for the Republicans. Gwinnett County has been cheating too and no one did nothing according to another blogger. Where is the NAACP? Where is Berniece King? Where is Andrew Young? Where is Jessie Jackson, who usually comes around when there is a crisis? Where is Al Sharpton who comes around when there is a crisis? Where are the leaders in the Fraternities and Sororities? This is a movement here in Atlanta. I will see you all at the King Memorial Dedication in DC, in August. Eroll Davis, Kudos to you (David) and Goliath (all the wrongs and lies in the system). Where are our Faith Based leaders? Brother El tell it all, not just your going away speech. Give us the inside scoop.

Paddy O

July 12th, 2011
1:33 pm

you think we have iffy BOE’s here – that is one bunch of panzy, spineless leaders out there in Texas. I hope all those fools get recalled.

David Sims

July 12th, 2011
1:45 pm

Charles is right. If the DeSoto Independent School District had made sure of Kathy Augustine’s past before hiring her, they could have saved themselves much money and trouble.

I really don’t know why some people have trouble accepting the idea that blacks have a deficit, as compared with whites, in intelligence and in ethical behavior. After all, the same people have, or would have, no difficulty accepting other racial variables. Skin color is the most obvious. But there are many others.

One of those racial differences is the rate at which fraternal twins are born. Fraternal twin births among blacks are twice as common as among whites, and four times as common as among Asians.

Another difference is the age at which babies begin to walk. Black babies do that quickest, on the average at 11 months. White babies, 12 months. Asian babies, 13 months.

There are loads of other racial differences which are indisputably caused by genetic factors. The only reason people resist recognizing the racial variation of intelligence is that they have been conditioned to do so by leftist propaganda. The leftists make that propaganda because intelligence is a trait that plays a key role in individual and group success in modern societies, and advancing the socioeconomic position of blacks is a part of their political agenda. They could have turned their media engines upon some other racial variable and achieved the same general aversion among the public in recognizing it, but the leftists don’t care much about how often fraternal twins are born, since employers don’t try harder to hire workers on that basis (among other reasons).

188,000

July 12th, 2011
2:20 pm

this cheater was getting a salary of $188,000 for this???? seriously??? what a disgrace—she shouldn’t be making $18,000 for this cheating and coverup.

Dr. Proud Black Man

July 12th, 2011
2:44 pm

@ David Sims

“I really don’t know why some people have trouble accepting the idea that blacks have a deficit, as compared with whites, in intelligence and in ethical behavior.”

What an arrogant self righteous statement. One needs only to pick up a paper and read about the trouble that YOU people get into. Here’s an example of one of YOUR buddies:

http://sex-offender.vsp.virginia.gov:80/sor/offenderDetails.html?regId=24600

Apsteacherfor5years

July 12th, 2011
2:50 pm

@ david sims

Did you study frenology or something? I for one can’t believe some of the comments you make on this blog, and I have trouble believing you are genuine in your posts.

Lucy

July 12th, 2011
3:25 pm

@ david sims – How’s business at your meth lab in the trailer park with you and your neo-nazi friends?

Digger

July 12th, 2011
4:34 pm

The truth in this case is obviously very scary and painful. That’s quite understandable. But it is the truth nonetheless, and incidents very similar to this will become more and more common. The chickens are coming home. I can’t be Michael Jordan and you can’t truthfully call yourself ‘Doctor’. It’s your form of cheap bling. Lots of cheap bling in APS also.

atlmom

July 12th, 2011
4:39 pm

david sims: is there a difference between men and women too re: intelligence? and even if there WAS a difference in intelligence between the races…well, who’s to say what it is? clearly there are intelligent men and intelligent women. intelligent blacks and intelligent whites and intelligent asians, etc.
But to say that a whole race is more intelligent than another – that doesn’t really matter, does it? Unless you can prove that EVERY SINGLE white is MORE intelligent than *every single* black person – it doesn’t matter. And you clearly couldn’t prove that.
Since you can’t – we have an obligation in society to educate EVERYONE. To know in our hearts that EVERYONE *should* get an education – *no matter what their race* and *no matter what their socioeconomic group*. it makes no sense to do otherwise.

funny

July 12th, 2011
5:12 pm

dont worry about the trolls

anyone got a handle on what laws that could have been broken for firing and intimidation of employees in covering up/blind eye to the cheating

David Sims

July 12th, 2011
5:19 pm

@DrPBM. I’m familiar with the crime of Kevin Strom. Only one of the charges against him was valid; the rest were just pile-it-ons by the prosecuting attorney that got thrown out in court. Strom agreed that he had created child pornography when he pasted the faces of two teenage girls on the bodies of a pair of adult porn actresses. That’s what he went to jail for.

Nobody, including racists, ever said that whites commit no crimes. We do. Racial differences aren’t matters of “this race does all of it, that race does none of it.” Rather, they are matters of more or less.

I routinely consult the FBI Uniform Crime Reports in order to find out what the Black-to-White per capita rate ratio is for the perpetration of some crime or other. There are a few crimes that whites are more likely to commit than blacks, on the average. One of them is Driving Under the Influence (of alcohol). There’s even a drug that whites are more prone to abuse than blacks: methamphetamine.

But for most crimes, blacks have a higher per capita perpetration rate than whites do. Here’s the link you might want to have a look at:

http://www2.fbi.gov/ucr/cius2008/data/table_43.html

Remember, the FBI (and the Justice Department generally) considers Hispanics to be “white” for the purpose of categorizing their criminal offenses. (However, when Hispanics are victims, they are placed in a separate category.) In order to remove Hispanic offenders from a combined B/”W” per capita rate ratio, a rule of thumb is to multiply it by 4/3, and the result will be the B/W per capita rate ratio, with W meaning “non-Hispanic whites.” The population ratio, White-to-Black for US residents in 2008 was 5.10, approximately.

Here are some B/W per capita perpetration rate ratios, in the US, for 1998. Murder: 7.05. Rape: 3.33. Armed Robbery: 9.16. Aggravated Assault: 3.64. DUI: 0.772. Gambling Offenses: 22.4. There’s a leftist myth that whites commit pedophilia (child molestation) at a higher rate than blacks do. But the truth is as follows: although a slight majority of child molesters in the US (51%) are white, the B/W per capita rate ratio for the perpetration of those crimes is about 2.5. Blacks are about two-and-a-half times more likely to sexually abuse a child than a white is. Them’s your bros, PBM.

@Lucy. Actually, I’m a West Virginia hillbilly. You know, the folks who, according to the TV propaganda, have low IQs because of in-breeding and drool while they attempt to play banjos.

But one of my neighbors is a retired college professor with a doctorate in business: Dr. Bob DeMarais. Another of my neighbors, until he died in 2002, was a retired physics professor: Dr. William L. Pierce. I say “neighbor” in the sense that they lived relatively nearby. We’re in the Allegheny Mountains, and their homes aren’t in my direct line of sight.

And there’s me, a former military scientist, having worked in the 1980s for the Foreign Technology Division at Wright-Patterson AFB, and though I don’t have a Ph.D., I could probably teach math to most of your APS math teachers. We hillbillies are smarter than the propaganda makes us seem. For you black folks down there, the reverse is true. Your Atlanta Public Schools spend $3000 more per pupil to educate black students than West Virginia spends on white students, but your youths’ test scores can’t compare with those of our hillbilly kids unless you cheat your butts off.

David Sims

July 12th, 2011
6:08 pm

@atlmom. There’s a difference in the distribution of IQ between white men and white women, although the averages are in almost the same place. White men have a higher standard deviation in IQ than white women do. A higher percentage of us guys are idiots. But a higher percentage of us guys are geniuses, too. One way to see the effects of that fact is to look up the 50 most proficient chess players in the world. Forty-nine of them are men. Only one is a woman.

There IS a distributed difference in intelligence between the races. Who’s to say what it is? Why, the psychologists who have examined the matter scientifically, that’s who. Two of the most prominent of these are Arthur R. Jensen and J. Philippe Rushton. Their joint publication, “Thirty Years of Research on Race Differences in Cognitive Ability,” was published in Psychology, Public Policy, and Law, 2005, vol. 11, no. 2, pp. 235-294.

No racist says that every white is smarter than every black. We know better. There is some overlap in the two distributions.

But we do say that only one black in nine has an IQ higher than 100. It’s true. Further, if an employer has available jobs of a mentally challenging kind that requires that the worker have an IQ of 130 of higher, and if he receives equal numbers of applications from both whites and blacks, then he will, if he is proceeding in a “colorblind” manner, hire 350 whites for each black he hires.

And that’s the difference that racial differences in intelligence makes.

Dr. Proud Black Man

July 12th, 2011
6:34 pm

@ David Sims

Do you have ANYTHING to add other then “whites smart blacks dumb?” Seriously since you have been posting here you are very predictable even down to your citations of Rushton and Jensen. And why should we believe your explanation of what happened to your pedophile butt buddy?

“Them’s your bros, PBM.”

I don’t have any brothers hillbilly.

Appalled12

July 12th, 2011
7:06 pm

David Sims is a sh_t stirrer!…Ignore him and let us stay on the topic at hand…TOO MUCH attention is being given to his racist rhetoric!!!!…
@ David Sims
“It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt!”
(Mark Twain)

catlady

July 12th, 2011
7:29 pm

David: Maybe women don’t care for chess. It isn’t a question of intelligence; many smart people don’t care for game-playing, considering it a waste of time (like golf).

catlady

July 12th, 2011
7:32 pm

On topic: How can Ms. Augustine qualify for any paid leave of any kind (administrative, sick, vacation) with one day under her belt? Must be VERY generous bennies.

Tell the Truth and Shame the Devil

July 12th, 2011
9:26 pm

When Kathy Augustine came to APS she was focused, fair and a hard worker.

She made a 360 turnaround. She became arrogant, unapproachable and unfair. I cannot figure out to this day what happened. MAYBE THE REAL KATHY AUGUSTINE SHOWED UP.

If the people in Texas are smart they would give her her walking papers.

daddy57

July 12th, 2011
11:19 pm

The Texas Board blew it. Hopefully, they will fix it quickly. I’m more concerned about DCCS. Why don’t they go back to those two Illinois candidates who pulled out and ask them to reconsider. Maybe if the Board agreed to let them do what needed to be done, we could hire a superintendent.

Random Thought

July 13th, 2011
8:48 am

At the end of the day, Augustine should not have been hired until the investigation was completed and she was cleared. The DeSoto Board will have to pay a high price for not using common sense by hiring someone under investigation for cheating.

veteranteacher

July 13th, 2011
12:17 pm

APS

July 14th, 2011
8:14 am

Augustine certainly did change after she came to work with Beverly Hall. She in fact became the day-to-day superintendent for years as Hall traveled weekly. She was allowed to function as a paid intern acquiring valuable on the job experience as she was allowed to function with no Board oversight the entire time since they were not paying attention at all to her or Hall their direct report. So Augustine “knows” all about everything and all of the corruption that was carried out daily under her leadership.

we r b ing n fected

July 14th, 2011
10:51 pm

Remember “No Child Left Behind” was based on a lie. Rod Paige, the former Sec. of Education under W. Bush from 2001-2005, was superintendent of the Houston Independent School District (HISD). Largely based on the success of the HISD, labeled the “Texas Miracle”, “No Child Left Behind” was drafted and voted into law.

Except the “Texas Miracle” was not true. Over 3,000 High School dropouts were labeled as “transfer students” instead of dropouts, dramatically lowering the dropout rate. Instead of changing answers like the Atlanta teachers, Houston’s principals made sure the lowest performing students did not take the standardized tests. I guess it is not surprising that legislation based on fraud is still creating fraud in our educational system.

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2004/01/06/60II/main591676.shtml