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The AJC's original APS cheating reports

18 items
Surge in CRCT results raises ‘big red flag’

Updated: 1:36 p.m. Monday, March 26, 2012

A miracle occurred at Atherton Elementary this summer, if its standardized math test scores are to be believed. Half of the DeKalb County school’s fifth-graders failed a yearly state test in the spring. When the 32 students took retests, not only did every one of them pass — 26 scored ...
Are drastic swings in CRCT scores valid?
Third-grader Makya Holland (center) participates in an exercise in math class at Capitol View Elementary. School administrators have defended the school's test score gains.

Updated: 12:00 p.m. Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Editor's note: This is one of the original stories the AJC wrote on suspected cheating at Georgia schools, including 12 in Atlanta. It was published in October 2009: Statistically unlikely state test scores are showing up in more classrooms, suggesting the cheating investigation that has engulfed four schools might be ...
Commission reports evidence of cheating on tests

11:51 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 3, 2010

A long-awaited investigative report into alleged cheating in Atlanta Public Schools, released Monday, may have raised as many questions as it answered. A commission appointed to study suspicious erasures on standardized tests recommended possible sanctions against 109 educators, including 38 principals or other administrators, who may have taken part in ...
Whistle-blowing teachers targeted
Former teacher Paul Landerman found Atlanta Public Schools' investigation of his complaint quickly turned against him after he reported seeing students cheating on the graduation test with a teacher present. Landerman, who taught Japanese at Carver High School, is shown here near his home in Sandy Springs Thursday, Jan. 20, 2011.

Updated: 8:15 a.m. Monday, Jan. 24, 2011

His bosses had no trouble dismissing Ryan Abbott’s report of cheating on standardized tests in an Atlanta school. They simply cast him in a self-fulfilling role, Abbott says: “disgruntled teacher.” Abbott was already on probation, after four years at Benteen Elementary. His students had not posted the big increases in ...
Ex-APS official: Hall ordered destruction of documents tied to cheating
Former APS head of internal investigations, Colinda Howard has accused superintendent Beverly Hall of ordering the destruction of documents that showed a widespread CRCT cheating problem.

Updated: 7:42 a.m. Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Superintendent Beverly Hall ordered the destruction of investigative documents that detailed “systematic” cheating on standardized tests in the Atlanta Public Schools, according to a former high-ranking district official. Hall also instructed subordinates to omit “adverse findings” from a new version of the report and then publicly cited the revised document ...
Investigation: Hall knew -- or should have known -- about cheating

Updated: 11:50 a.m. Tuesday, July 5, 2011

State investigators have uncovered a decade of systemic cheating in the Atlanta Public Schools and conclude that Superintendent Beverly Hall knew or should have known about it, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has learned.   In a report that Gov. Nathan Deal planned to release today, the investigators name nearly 180 educators, ...
Major execs invested in Hall
Atlanta hired Beverly Hall in 1999 after she rose through the ranks in the public schools of Newark, N.J., and New York City.

Updated: 10:16 a.m. Monday, July 18, 2011

In February 2010, some of Atlanta’s top business leaders realized they had a problem. For a decade, they had aligned themselves with Beverly Hall, the superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools. They willingly accepted Hall’s story line of rebirth in an urban school system. They promoted and sometimes exaggerated Hall’s achievements ...
Investigation into APS cheating finds unethical behavior across every level
A state investigation found former Atlanta schools superintendent Beverly Hall and her top aides either ignored or destroyed evidence of test cheating across the district.

Updated: 10:44 a.m. Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Across Atlanta Public Schools, staff worked feverishly in secret to transform testing failures into successes. Teachers and principals erased and corrected mistakes on students’ answer sheets. Area superintendents silenced whistle-blowers and rewarded subordinates who met academic goals by any means possible. Superintendent Beverly Hall and her top aides ignored, buried, ...
Principal at center of APS cheating scandal resigns
Chrisptoher Waller resigned from Parks Middle School on April 25, 2012.

Updated: 8:28 p.m. Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Christopher Waller, a middle school principal accused of coordinating mass test cheating, resigned Tuesday after Atlanta Public Schools issued plans to fire him. Waller emerged as one of the key figures in a 400-plus page state investigative report into test cheating, an example, investigators noted, of the toxic culture they ...
Cheating our children: Suspicious school test scores across the nation
St. Louis: Patrick Henry Downtown Academy’s principal was placed on leave last year for falsifying attendance records. Because attendance rates are used to calculate state funding, it’s possible the alleged fraud attracted state aid to the school that it didn’t deserve. Even though the state has not found cheating at Henry, an AJC analysis uncovered unusual scores dating back to 2007.

4:54 p.m. Sunday, March 25, 2012

Suspicious test scores in roughly 200 school districts resemble those that entangled Atlanta in the biggest cheating scandal in American history, an investigation by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution shows. The newspaper analyzed test results for 69,000 public schools and found high concentrations of suspect math or reading scores in school systems ...
Beverly Hall, 34 others indicted in Atlanta schools cheating scandal
Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard announces the indictments during a press conference about the Atlanta Public Schools cheating scandal inside his office on Friday, March 29, 2013 .

10:21 p.m. Friday, March 29, 2013

Full coverage of the Atlanta schools cheating trial verdict. The supposed transformation of Atlanta Public Schools overseen by former Superintendent Beverly Hall resulted from a criminal enterprise that victimized thousands of struggling students for years, authorities alleged Friday. Capping a series of investigations that spanned four years, a Fulton County ...
Missing report may be focus of grand jury probe
The front of D.H. Stanton Elementary is seen in this April 2012 photo.

9:44 p.m. Thursday, March 28, 2013

An internal inquiry confirmed a”culture of wrongdoings” at D.H. Stanton Elementary School in Atlanta: Attendance records were falsified. Disciplinary files were doctored. Friends of the principal got paid for tutoring they never performed. And the principal covered up reports that staff members had physically abused students. Special investigators appointed to ...
No. 2 APS official absent in indictment
Attorney, Gerald Griggs representing indicted Atlanta Public Schools cheating scandal defendants tried Monday to get information on how his clients can turn themselves in but was turned away from the Fulton County Jail because of paperwork delays.

9:30 p.m. Monday, April 1, 2013

In the Atlanta Public Schools, she was the “godmother.” Kathy Augustine’s job, other educators told state investigators in 2011, was simple: Whatever Superintendent Beverly Hall wanted, Augustine made sure it happened. “Everything,” one official said, “had to be run past her.” But when the district’s cheating scandal culminated in criminal ...
Ex-Hall deputy not questioned in cheating case
Kathy Augustine

5:56 p.m. Friday, April 5, 2013

If the criminal case against Beverly Hall hinges on testimony from inside the Atlanta schools’ alleged cheating conspiracy, it apparently won’t come from the former superintendent’s second-in-command. Kathy Augustine, a close associate of Hall’s since the 1990s, received no immunity from prosecution in exchange for incriminating Hall or others, her ...
High-stakes testing needs scrutiny, Barge and others say
Inigo Vazquez, a third-grader in Diane Clark's (cq), class at Findley Oaks Elementary School in north Fulton County, prepping for the CRCT test.

3:01 p.m. Tuesday, April 9, 2013

John Barge was working in Bartow County Schools when a high school student had a panic attack trying to pass the graduation test and a fourth-grader became so stressed taking the CRCT he drew blood stabbing his arm with a pencil. “I believed well before the Atlanta cheating issue that ...
Atlanta school districts put tests on lockdown

12:00 a.m. Sunday, April 21, 2013

Atlanta schools’ standardized tests are treated like prison inmates: held in double-locked rooms, protected by a chain of custody and watched by video surveillance. After investigations showing widespread cheating on Atlanta’s annual tests in 2009, school districts across the metro area have strengthened safeguards against tampering with students’ answers. Atlanta ...
Business leaders pushed pro-APS report despite flaws
Sam Williams, president of the Metro Area Chamber.

8:34 a.m. Sunday, April 21, 2013

In July 2011, a governor’s task force released a blockbuster investigative report that found widespread cheating in Atlanta Public Schools. In the findings, the authors criticized business leaders, including those at the Metro Atlanta Chamber, for a campaign to attack the “messengers” rather than find the truth because they were ...
Atlanta teacher bonus payments revealed

12:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 1, 2013

If they did it, cheating didn’t pay well for most of the Atlanta educators charged with crimes, whose bonuses totaled as little as $750 and averaged $2,600. The exception was Superintendent Beverly Hall, whose bonus pay reached about $365,000 since 2005, when an indictment alleges criminal activity began. The bonus ...
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