Video: 35 Atlanta educators to surrender today in massive cheating conspiracy

posted at 2:01 pm on April 2, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

They had until noon today to surrender to police in the worst cheating scandal involving standardized education testing in American history. The thirty-five teachers and administrators represent only the first round of potential defendants in the appalling story, where “educators” spent more effort in burnishing test scores than in actually educating children — who got left behind in service to the ambition of the school system. CBS reports on an unusual type of Enrollment Day:

Investigators say Atlanta’s school district orchestrated a culture of cheating to benefit those at the top.

Nearly 200 educators admitted to taking part in the massive scandal: they tampered with students’ standardized tests and corrected answers to inflate scores. Some teachers had pizza parties to erase wrong answers and circle in the right ones. One principal allegedly handled altered tests wearing gloves to avoid leaving her fingerprints.

At one middle school, 86 percent of eighth-graders scored proficient in math, compared to 24 percent the year before. Prosecutors say that progress was a criminal mirage.

“The four principle crimes that are charged in the indictment are the statements and writings, false swearings, theft by taking, and influencing witnesses,” Fulton County District Attorney Paul L. Howard, Jr. said.

Beverly Hall is Atlanta’s retired school superintendent. Her system’s turnaround won her national fame, awards, and more than $500,000 in performance bonuses. But investigators say she pressured teachers and principals to cheat, and punished those who refused. Hall, among those indicted, has denied the charges. A grand jury recommended her bail be set at $7.5 million.

One of those left behind was Nybria Collins, now 15 and reading at a fifth-grade level. Despite failing her classes, she kept passing the standardized tests, leaving her mother to wonder what was happening at the public school. Instead of being prepared to succeed in adulthood, these “educators” left Nybria to fail for a lifetime while they had pizza parties to cover up their incompetence.

The indictments involve racketeering charges, which carry a maximum 20 years in prison. Compared to the length of the damage they did to children like Nybria, that’s letting them off easy.

Perhaps school choice will get a closer look, at least in Atlanta.

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Comment pages: 1 2

Yeah…. if only the unions had more power, this could have been prevented!

/liberal toad like nonpartisan

Seriously, this is going to be hard to reconcile. I understand the point of standardized tests. But when the teachers are cheating, how can you measure anything?

Vanceone on April 2, 2013 at 2:04 PM

All because Bush was creating educational standards “too hard” and “inflexible” for inner-city kids, or something.

JeremiahJohnson on April 2, 2013 at 2:07 PM

I wish I could say I am shocked.

However, I am not shocked. Not in any way, shape, or form…

JohnGalt23 on April 2, 2013 at 2:07 PM

The investigators have the goods on these thugs. This is simply about persons in positions of authority with no integrity what so ever. They committed fraud for money and advancement. The tests were merely the vehicles for their fraud.

d1carter on April 2, 2013 at 2:07 PM

BTW, what other school districts around the country have and are doing the same thing..?

d1carter on April 2, 2013 at 2:07 PM

Yeah…. if only the unions had more power, this could have been prevented!

Vanceone on April 2, 2013 at 2:04 PM

Size matters

Shy Guy on April 2, 2013 at 2:08 PM

Perhaps school choice will get a closer look

No. Not even a little bit.

More revenue is needed here, not choice.

Gatsu on April 2, 2013 at 2:08 PM

And they wonder why there is broad support for vouchers.

BacaDog on April 2, 2013 at 2:08 PM

The Atlanta Journal Constitution investigated this massive fraud and found nothing…

d1carter on April 2, 2013 at 2:09 PM

Shameful. I live in a suburb of Atlanta that is very high-achieving in public schools so I’m thinking that’s where a lot of the pressure comes from, but that’s no excuse.

We just voted in the ability of the state to approve charter schools (rather than relying only on local school boards to do so – too much cronyism, etc.). Lots of debate for/against when it came up for a vote since local school boards could approve/reject charter schools already. Proponents thought it would add another layer of competition and ultimately force the public schools to perform on a level playing field. Those against thought it was a waste of resources and took decision-making out of the hands of local administrators.

Whatever the outcome, hopefully it will help in preventing another embarrassment like what’s happening with these teachers/administrators.

Rufus on April 2, 2013 at 2:10 PM

Same thing happened in waterbury ct although nothing came of it. I’m sure it’s wide spread. But the teachers involved should face jail time (this is major fraud that will ruin kids futures) and be open to civil suits.

I feel bad for the poor kids who worked hard to get good test scores and thought they were doing well only to find out that they’d actually been tanking the tests for years and that they were no where near as smart / educated as they thought. Talk about a blow to your self esteem

Or the poor parents who thought their kids were finally improving and were so proud of their kids only to find out it was all a fraud… Terrible.

Timin203 on April 2, 2013 at 2:12 PM

Wonder if these are found guilty and sent to prison, will they get fired and still get their retirement? It is really hard to get rid of bad teachers I have heard?
L

letget on April 2, 2013 at 2:12 PM

Somehow it will be the fault of southern crackers.

docflash on April 2, 2013 at 2:13 PM

Guess they aren’t “no ways taaard”

ToddPA on April 2, 2013 at 2:14 PM

Warms the cockles of my heart to see these hard-working educators getting what they deserve for their efforts.

There is an especially hot corner in hell waiting for people who will destroy the potential lives of children in order to enrich themselves. They’ve earned that corner.

iurockhead on April 2, 2013 at 2:14 PM

From the video – “All 35 educators have until Noon today …”

EDUCATORS.

The media pissants have no idea about the meaning of a word.

If these filthy lot are educators, I’m a Sooners fan.

[I needed some levity]

OhEssYouCowboys on April 2, 2013 at 2:15 PM

They committed fraud for money and advancement. The tests were merely the vehicles for their fraud.

d1carter on April 2, 2013 at 2:07 PM

And they should be made to pay back to the state every penny of their pay and benefits and bonuses as restitution.
And the kids hurt by this should be given school choice vouchers to get to a school that can catch them up – paid for entirely by the fraudsters.

dentarthurdent on April 2, 2013 at 2:15 PM

The indictments involve racketeering charges, which carry a maximum 20 years in prison. Compared to the length of the damage they did to children like Nybria, that’s letting them off easy.

Probably half of America’s school administrators should be prosecuted like this. Rotten Marxist ba$tards the whole lot of them.

SWalker on April 2, 2013 at 2:15 PM

Thank you for the twin destructive forces of teh DOE’s Jimmy Carter, Democrat, Georgia.

The Department of Energy and the Department of Education.

tom daschle concerned on April 2, 2013 at 2:16 PM

If teachers were truly professionals, paid in relation to their skill and ability, this would never have happened. But in a union-based hiring model, where pay is based on seniority and not ability and firing for lack of performance is prohibited by union contract, this is exactly the kind of mentality you get. Both my parents were teachers, but the environment they taught in doesn’t exist anymore. Most of the incentives in today’s public education are in the direction of mediocrity, conformity, and corruption.

Socratease on April 2, 2013 at 2:16 PM

Whatever the outcome, hopefully it will help in preventing another embarrassment travesty like what’s happening with these teachers/administrators.

Rufus on April 2, 2013 at 2:10 PM

Fixed.

iurockhead on April 2, 2013 at 2:16 PM

These educators should immediately pass Go, and proceed to Ivy League professorships.

OhEssYouCowboys on April 2, 2013 at 2:18 PM

Public unions are the root of all modern evil.

jukin3 on April 2, 2013 at 2:19 PM

I wonder how many of them are Democrats and voted for Obowma…?

Seven Percent Solution on April 2, 2013 at 2:19 PM

Her system’s turnaround won her national fame, awards, and more than $500,000 in performance bonuses.

Well, obviously we’re not investing enough money in public education.

RadClown on April 2, 2013 at 2:19 PM

If only we had increased funding to the democrat teachers unions, I’m sure this would of not been necessary. The next time ANY government asks you for more education funding “for the children”, you can be sure is is “for the union teachers and administrators” and NOT for the children. Since 1970, education funding has more than tripled per student without any increase in performance by students. To me, that signals a “very bad investment”.

djtnt on April 2, 2013 at 2:20 PM

A similar scandal is happening in neighboring DeKalb County Schools. It’s close to losing it’s accreditation The Governor has recently removed 6 of the 9 DeKalb County school board members. Dunwoody, a city in DeKalb County, is threatening to break away and form their own school system.

midgeorgian on April 2, 2013 at 2:20 PM

All because Bush was creating educational standards “too hard” and “inflexible” for inner-city kids, or something.

JeremiahJohnson on April 2, 2013 at 2:07 PM

Uh, Bush let Ted Kennedy write most of the “No Child Left Behind” bill as a gesture of good faith. Ted wrote it, then bashed it after passing.

Bevan on April 2, 2013 at 2:24 PM

I wonder how many of them are Democrats and voted for Obowma…?

Seven Percent Solution on April 2, 2013 at 2:19 PM

lol…100?

RedInMD on April 2, 2013 at 2:24 PM

more than $500,000 in performance bonuses.

I want to see ALL of that returned to the state.

dentarthurdent on April 2, 2013 at 2:25 PM

I wonder how many of them are Democrats and voted for Obowma…?

Seven Percent Solution on April 2, 2013 at 2:19 PM
lol…100?

RedInMD on April 2, 2013 at 2:24 PM

whoops, meant 100%

RedInMD on April 2, 2013 at 2:25 PM

Those “teachers” that wore wires to gather information better be protecting themselves…

d1carter on April 2, 2013 at 2:25 PM

The system worked
-nea

cmsinaz on April 2, 2013 at 2:26 PM

Leftists will esplode on Sanford win tonight and Bill Clinton will console all.

Crooks, from all sides, should be hung.

Schadenfreude on April 2, 2013 at 2:27 PM

The state run media will focus their stories on the standardized tests…

d1carter on April 2, 2013 at 2:27 PM

look at that grinning mug at the beginning of the video, keep obama in president, all of the test scores in the big cities will far exceed the national average.

RedInMD on April 2, 2013 at 2:27 PM

Unions and commerce made a poisonous deal on amnesty.

May all go to Hades, pronto, with Rubio/Schumer up front.

Schadenfreude on April 2, 2013 at 2:28 PM

The Atlanta Journal Constitution investigated this massive fraud and found nothing…

d1carter on April 2, 2013 at 2:09 PM

That says more about the Atlanta Journal-Constipation than anything else…

psrch on April 2, 2013 at 2:29 PM

Lawyers are rehearsing the ‘race card’ defense for these public school employees as we speak…

locomotivebreath1901 on April 2, 2013 at 2:31 PM

“… my people.” – Eric Holder

Seven Percent Solution on April 2, 2013 at 2:32 PM

What is being missed in this story is that this represents a very large scale conspiracy. Liberals and unfortunately even some that call themselves conservative love to deride anyone that mentions or hints at any kind of conspiracy in officialdom.

In this case they got caught red-handed but this kind of thing goes on everyday to greater and lesser degrees.

Axion on April 2, 2013 at 2:33 PM

NCLB, passed under the Bush Administration, required schools to meet certain performance benchmarks and tied funding to them. Ergo, these *ahem* “educators” were forced to cheat, otherwise Lil’ Johnny would get “even more stupider,” if that’s possible. So it’s GWB’s fault. See how easy that was?

Source: Libtard echo chamber

Roc on April 2, 2013 at 2:33 PM

It’s damn hard not to become a racist these days, looking every day at new shining beacons of honesty, integrity, and industriousness. The counterexamples do exist, but they are few and far between.

“I have a dream that my children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged hired by the color of their skin but by the content of their character resume.”

Archivarix on April 2, 2013 at 2:36 PM

The indictments involve racketeering charges, which carry a maximum 20 years in prison. Compared to the length of the damage they did to children like Nybria, that’s letting them off easy.

The only thing surprising and interesting to me about this story is how it is being approached. Not from the “culture of cheating” but rather from the aspect of the bonus money paid out. Seems a much more effective tactic with the possibility of jail time. Keep in mind these people are guilty of fraud. Not only did they cheat than dealing with it from the standpoint of professional Nybria Collins out of a decent education, they cheated the the taxpayers when they took that money for doing a good job. More teachers should be put in the dock for their fraud.

Happy Nomad on April 2, 2013 at 2:36 PM

This is the extreme case. The moderate cheating cases by public educators, and even admins of Ivy League universities exist. The cheating is subtler, cleverer.

There’s a reason none of the admins / faculty members of Harvard and Princeton has called for or said releasing the Obamas’ college transcripts.

vnohara on April 2, 2013 at 2:37 PM

There really are no words to describe the lack of morality involved in this story.

GeeWhiz on April 2, 2013 at 2:38 PM

The system worked
-nea

cmsinaz on April 2, 2013 at 2:26 PM

You made me laugh.

OhEssYouCowboys on April 2, 2013 at 2:39 PM

“Despite what some among us would like to believe it is not because of our creative ideas. It is not because of the merit of our positions. It is not because we care about children and it is not because we have a vision of a great public school for every child. NEA and its affiliates are effective advocates because we have power.”

“And we have power because there are more than 3.2 million people who are willing to pay us hundreds of millions of dollars in dues each year, because they believe that we are the unions that can most effectively represent them, the unions that can protect their rights and advance their interests as education employees.”

“This is not to say that the concern of NEA and its affiliates with closing achievement gaps, reducing dropout rates, improving teacher quality and the like are unimportant or inappropriate. To the contrary. These are the goals that guide the work we do. But they need not and must not be achieved at the expense of due process, employee rights and collective bargaining. That simply is too high a price to pay.”

- National Education Association General Counsel, Bob Chanin, in his farewell address.

Resist We Much on April 2, 2013 at 2:42 PM

Lawyers are rehearsing the ‘race card’ defense for these public school employees as we speak…

locomotivebreath1901 on April 2, 2013 at 2:31 PM

Then the defense can bring in whole busses full of victims. People like Nybria Collins, a 15-year-old reading at the fifth grade level despite, on paper, passing the standardized tests. Maybe they can even find some of the pizza sauce stained tests as an exhibit.

I just don’t see how the race card plays itself out here unless the idea is that black children just can’t pass those standardized tests that whitey in the suburbs can pass with ease.

Happy Nomad on April 2, 2013 at 2:42 PM

The people charged in this scam saw a way for them to enrich themselves or game the system for their advantage. OK.
But what about the children? Are they un-teachable, too dumb to “get” math, or were their teachers so incompetent that anything they did was useless?
If someone can teach a killer whale to do tricks, an animal that doesn’t speak, can’t read at all, but learns anyway, why can’t Atlanta children do their math or read.

srdem65 on April 2, 2013 at 2:42 PM

“When schoolchildren start paying union dues, that’s when I’ll start representing the interests of school children.”

- Albert Shanker, one-time President of the AFT & the UFT

Resist We Much on April 2, 2013 at 2:43 PM

Nybria Collins can’t read. Her mother knew it…and did what exactly? Apparently nothing.

And had it been known/documented that she can’t read, would she have been held back?

krome on April 2, 2013 at 2:44 PM

Here’s a thing that I find Truly disturbing about our Society.

I can remember 30 years ago, when I was in HS and when you
had a scandal (any scandal) the offenders were paraded
on camera with their heads bowed, tail between their legs.
They actually had SHAME.

Look at these people now…hell, they’re PROUD of being
CORRUPT.

TRULY SICKENING…..

ToddPA on April 2, 2013 at 2:44 PM

whoops, meant 100%

RedInMD on April 2, 2013 at 2:25 PM

Try more like 107%. They get big turn outs in districts like Atlanta.

antipc on April 2, 2013 at 2:49 PM

When schoolchildren start paying union dues, that’s when I’ll start representing the interests of school children.”

- Albert Shanker, one-time President of the AFT & the UFT

Resist We Much on April 2, 2013 at 2:43 PM

There ya go, Ladies and Gentlemen.

Things in a nutshell.

RWM, great, great quote.

[NOTE: I HAD to bold it. I HAD to]

:O)

OhEssYouCowboys on April 2, 2013 at 2:50 PM

33 years of the DoE and this is what we get.

Congress appropriated to the Department of Education an annual budget of $14.2 billion and 17,000 employees when establishing the Department of Education (1979)

Obama’s FY2012 Request: $77.4 billion

Money well spent, damn democrats.

D-fusit on April 2, 2013 at 2:51 PM

I just don’t see how the race card plays itself out here unless the idea is that black children just can’t pass those standardized tests that whitey in the suburbs can pass with ease.

Happy Nomad on April 2, 2013 at 2:42 PM

That would appear to be what the Florida State Board of Education believed in 2012:

The Florida State Board of Education passed a plan that sets goals for students in math and reading based upon their race.

On Tuesday, the board passed a revised strategic plan that says that by 2018, it wants 90 percent of Asian students, 88 percent of white students, 81 percent of Hispanics and 74 percent of black students to be reading at or above grade level. For math, the goals are 92 percent of Asian kids to be proficient, whites at 86 percent, Hispanics at 80 percent and blacks at 74 percent. It also measures by other groupings, such as poverty and disabilities, reported the Palm Beach Post.

The plan has infuriated many community activists in Palm Beach County and across the state.

Dr Thomas Sowell tells a story of when he was teaching economics at a historically-black college. One student came to him and said something to the effect, “I’m never going to be able to learn this stuff. Just letting you know.” He said, “Well, then, you’ll fail the class.” It turned out that her belief was shared by most of the class. Yet, the class passed the course…because they learned the subject matter once they realised that they would fail and no “grading curve” was going to be in effect.

It’s the soft bigotry of low expectations that people – too many on the Left and some on the Right (Not you. I’m not addressing this to you) – refuse to believe that people are capable of learning if they believe that they are. When they are told that their failures are the result of “the man” or something instead of their own failure to work or, in this case, the failure of teachers to teach, they begin to believe it and such thought becomes sadly pervasive.

Resist We Much on April 2, 2013 at 2:53 PM

And they should be made to pay back to the state every penny of their pay and benefits and bonuses as restitution.

dentarthurdent on April 2, 2013 at 2:15 PM

Not good enough. They should lose their jobs, teaching credentials, and their pensions as well. No mercy and no exceptions.

Oh, and their voting rights too.

antipc on April 2, 2013 at 2:56 PM

Uh, Bush let Ted Kennedy write most of the “No Child Left Behind” bill as a gesture of good faith. Ted wrote it, then bashed it after passing.

Bevan on April 2, 2013 at 2:24 PM

Ahhhh yes, and now Ted is where he should have been when he abandoned Mary Jo .

Mary Jo is still unavailable for comment!

belad on April 2, 2013 at 2:58 PM

But but but….slavery happened in America

MoreLiberty on April 2, 2013 at 2:58 PM

And they wonder why kids end up on the streets and in state prison.

GarandFan on April 2, 2013 at 3:06 PM

If these filthy lot are educators, I’m a Sooners fan.

[I needed some levity]

OhEssYouCowboys on April 2, 2013 at 2:15 PM

What? You mean you aren’t?

Aviator on April 2, 2013 at 3:10 PM

It’s pretty easy to see that all of this will turn out to be Bush’s fault.

Wasn’t it Bush that implemented all of this RACIST testing??

Axion on April 2, 2013 at 3:13 PM

Atlanta educators to surrender today in massive cheating conspiracy

But of course. They are union members and dems. Cheating is part of the leftist political triangle – Lie Cheat and Steal – all standard operating procedure. If it can benefit just one child, its worth it!

hawkeye54 on April 2, 2013 at 3:15 PM

“When schoolchildren start paying union dues, that’s when I’ll start representing the interests of school children.”

- Albert Shanker, one-time President of the AFT & the UFT

Resist We Much on April 2, 2013 at 2:43 PM

I was in Junior High in Manhattan when Shanker orchestrated the great Teacher’s Strike of 1967. And unlike these perps, Al actually ended up serving jail time. He had so much fun he did the same thing the following year.

Back in those days, Al defined the word “Brylcreem”.

Del Dolemonte on April 2, 2013 at 3:18 PM

I feel bad for the poor kids who worked hard to get good test scores and thought they were doing well only to find out that they’d actually been tanking the tests for years and that they were no where near as smart / educated as they thought. Talk about a blow to your self esteem

Or the poor parents who thought their kids were finally improving and were so proud of their kids only to find out it was all a fraud… Terrible.

And how about the kids that actually were doing well, only to find themselves on the same level with illiterate children? Or the teachers that really did do a good job, worked hard to actually educate the children they taught? Big slap in the face. Disgusting.

JusDreamin on April 2, 2013 at 3:19 PM

But of course. They are union members and dems. Cheating is part of the leftist political triangle – Lie Cheat and Steal – all standard operating procedure. If it can benefit just one child, its worth it!

hawkeye54 on April 2, 2013 at 3:15 PM

I’m expecting that one of the defenses that will be raised by these teachers is that they were doing it… for the children.

Axion on April 2, 2013 at 3:20 PM

This was a topic of discussion today in our faculty lounge. The teachers there seemed to be of the opinion that the administrators who were involved in pressuring teachers to falsify answers should be jailed and that the teachers who did the falsifying should have their teaching certificates revoked without the ability to ever receive another one. I personally think that the teachers and administrators both should get jail-time. Fraud is fraud and even if you are “pressured” you should be prosecuted if guilty, with maybe a lesser sentence if you could prove coercion.

Lily on April 2, 2013 at 3:22 PM

Uh, Bush let Ted Kennedy write most of the “No Child Left Behind” bill as a gesture of good faith. Ted wrote it, then bashed it after passing.

Bevan on April 2, 2013 at 2:24 PM

Unfortunately Bush43 was a big government “compassionate conservative.” He doesn’t receive nearly the “credit” he deserves for the destruction of the nation and the GOP and for paving the way for Obama.

Remember, for the first six years of his Presidency the GOP controlled BOTH houses of Congress.

bw222 on April 2, 2013 at 3:22 PM

old leftist charlie rose starts the ‘teacher performance’ meme

we have to face facts. the entire system from our leftist leaders to Charlie Rose are corrupt. the simple fact is that we don’t even know if the teachers are literate enough to teach. They tend to be from the bottom ranks of college educated people. School Administrators aren’t that much better…they won’t be doing any reforming anytime soon.

a system filled will crooks and dishonest people and their flacks in television will not fix itself.

r keller on April 2, 2013 at 3:26 PM

Remember, for the first six years of his Presidency the GOP controlled BOTH houses of Congress.

bw222 on April 2, 2013 at 3:22 PM

Majority Leader, Tom Daschle, would argue that Democrats controlled the Senate between 6 June 6, 2001 and 3 January 2003, but other than that, you are 100% right.

Resist We Much on April 2, 2013 at 3:28 PM

Ed, you left out the worst of it. The superintendent in charge got $500,000 in bonuses for performance. And the schools lost some funding because the Feds thought they didn’t need it anymore. Just horrible what they did to those kids to advance themselves.

Hal_10000 on April 2, 2013 at 3:29 PM

These teachers were doing this more or less right out in the open. Didn’t they necessarily have to believe they were above the law? Maybe they thought that because they were teachers and Union and women and maybe because they know Holder doesn’t prosecute ‘his people”?

They must have thought no one would dare oppose them. The Unions are drunk with power.

Axion on April 2, 2013 at 3:29 PM

Standing by for the class action lawsuit to be filed on behalf of the students who have been harmed.

This is going to get expensive for Atlanta.

These teachers were doing this more or less right out in the open. Didn’t they necessarily have to believe they were above the law? Maybe they thought that because they were teachers and Union and women and maybe because they know Holder doesn’t prosecute ‘his people”?

They were doing it for the children.

BobMbx on April 2, 2013 at 3:34 PM

Welp, looks like two weeks administrative leave with pay for each of them.

The Schaef on April 2, 2013 at 3:34 PM

Remember, for the first six years of his Presidency the GOP controlled BOTH houses of Congress.

bw222 on April 2, 2013 at 3:22 PM

And the deficit was at an unpatriotic $250B per year.

BobMbx on April 2, 2013 at 3:35 PM

Seems to be a pretty iron clad troll proof article. Or is it?

“Um, the fact that we can only spend 10K per student over a nine month period hobbles us and we had to cheat to advance them. The awards and distinctions meant nothing to us …. nothing at all.”

“They were rouge Conservative teachers.”

“GEORGE BUSH!!!”

hawkdriver on April 2, 2013 at 3:44 PM

Educators and journalists, both so often so very misnamed.

VorDaj on April 2, 2013 at 3:45 PM

These educators should be hired by NBC to be journalists. They are fully qualified.

VorDaj on April 2, 2013 at 3:48 PM

“They were rouge Conservative teachers.”

hawkdriver on April 2, 2013 at 3:44 PM

Red Conservatives???

lol

Resist We Much on April 2, 2013 at 3:50 PM

hmm, two letters flipped did that

hawkdriver on April 2, 2013 at 3:54 PM

Thank you, No Child Left Behind.

RDE2010 on April 2, 2013 at 3:57 PM

They were all black right?

jake49 on April 2, 2013 at 4:15 PM

Good. Lock ‘em all up.

JohnAGJ on April 2, 2013 at 4:17 PM

They were all black right?

jake49 on April 2, 2013 at 4:15 PM

That’s uncalled for.

hawkdriver on April 2, 2013 at 4:21 PM

Can someone please name me one city, county, state, or country run by blacks that is not corrupt?

rich8450 on April 2, 2013 at 4:30 PM

As fun as it is to bash unions, this isn’t a union issue, this isn’t a black/white issue, this isn’t a Dem/Repub issue – this is “the public education system in America is worthless” issue. Sure the first two factors MAY have made this particular case worse, but the state of our education system is the sickness – this case is only a symptom.

No Child Left Behind is a steamin pile of crap that’s done more harm than good. The focus on standardized tests as a means for rewards/punishments to districts, teachers and students has reduced a child’s public “education” to nothing of any value.

I question whatever “pedagogy” skills teachers are picking up in their degree-granting institutions serve them at all – or whether they are just not allowed to use them. I’ve seen very little in my child’s first 5 years of public education that rate praise. This year – a testing year – she’s pretested, practice-tested, learned testing “skills” and “techniques”, practice tested some more, reviewed test materials, etc. I’ll submit that she’s maybe had a month of actual instruction that wasn’t directly related to testing – and we wonder why we are behind other nations in the quality of our education.

What these peopel did was 110% WRONG, but it’s just a symptom of an educationcal culture that places more value on test-taking and test scores than any actual learning.

WhaleBellied on April 2, 2013 at 4:33 PM

Perhaps school choice will get a closer look, at least in Atlanta.

Ed, I’ve always found your irrational optimism charming.

EricW on April 2, 2013 at 4:36 PM

Years ago while watching a news program in Atlanta, a teacher being interviewed was asked what subject she taught. The answer, “I teaches English.” And we wonder where the low information voter comes from…

ghostwalker1 on April 2, 2013 at 4:37 PM

What these peopel did was 110% WRONG, but it’s just a symptom of an educationcal culture that places more value on test-taking and test scores than any actual learning.

WhaleBellied on April 2, 2013 at 4:33 PM

I’d say it’s a symptom of what’s wrong with this society as a whole.
A reasonable person with integrity would think that if their school was not scoring high enough on standardized tests, that perhaps they need to improve the quality of the education they provide.
In our deteriorating society (Idiocracy), too many people instead think about how they can cheat the system to make themselves look better – instead of fixing what’s wrong.

But I also personally think education should be handled entirely at the local level anyway – get the federal gubmint out of it – and eliminate the Dept of Edumacation and the unions.

dentarthurdent on April 2, 2013 at 4:43 PM

They were all black right?

jake49 on April 2, 2013 at 4:15 PM

Can someone please name me one city, county, state, or country run by blacks that is not corrupt?

rich8450 on April 2, 2013 at 4:30 PM

I’m going to go on the assumption both of you guys are comment seeders for painting this site in a negative light. But just in case you are serious, I’ll have to ask if you’ve followed this story or even watched the video?

The authorities bringing the investigation to a point of making charges and who are prosecuting are black. One is even pushing the RICO statute due to the believe it rises to the level on conspiracy. Ms. Collins whose daughter has been cheated by the actions of these school administrators and teachers and who is speaking out is black.

hawkdriver on April 2, 2013 at 4:44 PM

the “belief”

(it really is my speel-checker)

hawkdriver on April 2, 2013 at 4:46 PM

Years ago while watching a news program in Atlanta, a teacher being interviewed was asked what subject she taught. The answer, “I teaches English.” And we wonder where the low information voter comes from…

ghostwalker1 on April 2, 2013 at 4:37 PM

That class obviously had an emphasis on Ebonics….

dentarthurdent on April 2, 2013 at 4:48 PM

The fundamental question is when evaluating a school, who should be the consumer? If you say, “the child” brrrrrr wrong. A 5-year old or 10-year old, even an 18-year old is NOT the consumer. He or she is the product (assuming he or she gets educated.) No, the consumer should be the parent.

If you have involved parents who give a darn, and you give them the choice to choose the school, their child WILL get a decent education. If the parents don’t care and are not involved, then no system is likely to work (unless the child can be extraordinarily self-motivated and very mature.)

Public schools are set up so that the parents are not the consumer. In fact they are usually actively discouraged from participation (they’re not experts you see.) Nor are the children. The actual consumer — the one that is paying — is the government.

So what does the government want out of public schools? What does the government want out of anything? It wants power. It wants to be re-elected. It wants money. Thus the government wants public schools to serve those ends. Funnel money to the public teachers union and see that money come back in the form of campaign donations and teams of willing and eager campaign workers. Set up financial incentives and the goal becomes winning those financial incentives by hook or by crook.

As long as parents are not the consumers, this situation will not improve.

PackerBronco on April 2, 2013 at 4:52 PM

dentarthurdent on April 2, 2013 at 4:43 PM

I don’t disagree with anything you said. Maybe I was just thinking too small ;) but it does seem to be a microcosm of the bigger ills of society.

Like most other endeavors, social or commercial – the sooner you return the control and implemetation to the local constituents and kick govt out of things the better things will be.

WhaleBellied on April 2, 2013 at 4:53 PM

dentarthurdent on April 2, 2013 at 4:43 PM

But I will still maintain that even the teachers/administrators who DO want to make a difference and “do it right” really have very little ability to do so unless they go against disctrict, state and federal policies – so much emphasis is put on these damn tests that EVERYTHING is centered on taking it it, not on learning anything.

WhaleBellied on April 2, 2013 at 4:57 PM

Like most other endeavors, social or commercial – the sooner you return the control and implemetation to the local constituents and kick govt out of things the better things will be.

WhaleBellied on April 2, 2013 at 4:53 PM

Ya, I think that’s the key.
I really have no problem with standardized tests, as it seems to me something along that line might be necessary or at least useful in determining whether the schools and teachers are doing their jobs. I believe in pay for performance, so there needs to be some sort of evaluation standard. But it most definitely should not be coming from the federal government. At the very least, I would say that is a function “reserved to the people or the states” as written in the Constitution.

dentarthurdent on April 2, 2013 at 5:00 PM

If only they had posted “Cheating Educator Free Zone” signs, this never would have happened.

Dusty on April 2, 2013 at 5:00 PM

hmm, two letters flipped did that

hawkdriver on April 2, 2013 at 3:54 PM

Lighten up. I was playing with you. I know that it was a typo.

Resist We Much on April 2, 2013 at 5:03 PM

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