On the Front Lines of the Culture Wars

On the Front Lines of the Culture Wars


Atlanta teachers caught cheating, lying and stealing

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Lying, cheating and stealing were commonplace in the Atlanta Public Schools, according to an 800-page report – but the culprits weren’t children.

 The report says 178 teachers, principals and administrators over a decade erased wrong answers on students’ state benchmark tests – used to determine whether teachers and schools are doing a good job in teaching core subjects such as reading, science and math.

 Furthermore, they lied to cover up the widespread cheating. And they accepted bonuses and incentive payments for their “good job” – accepting money to which they were not entitled.

“Many of those cases could lead to criminal prosecutions,” Georgia Governor Nathan Deal told reporters Wednesday.

Eighty-two of the teachers flat-out confessed. The report said the cheating came to light when the state noticed an alarming number of erasure marks on the answer sheets.

Teachers and principals were erasing the wrong answers and filling in the right ones, the report said. At one school, the faculty even held weekend pizza parties to correct answers before turning them in. Over the course of a single year, scores at that school jumped 45 percent.

“We were told to get these scores by any means necessary,” said Sidnye Fells, a fourth grade teacher. “We were told our jobs were on the line.”

She told ABC News that teachers who refused to cheat were punished and pushed out. She was forced to leave the school in 2008. The school district said it is now firing all teachers and administrators implicated in the report.



  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment ALLAN

    As a former teacher, I do not approve of this sort of thing, but, as long as teachers are expected to make up for all the failures of the parents as parents, it is going to happen.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Sherry Bell

    As an Educator, this is the most insane issue that could go on in a Public School. Everyone of those involved should have their credentials taken away and should not be allowed to step inside a school again as an employee.

  • http://AddaURLtothiscomment Remarie

    it would not be fair to ruin the career of a teacher who responds to a threatening directive from a principal. Some of these teachers were put in a horrible position. While in hind-sight we can say they should have reported it to authorities with evidence, this may not have been possible. There was no whistle-blower protection. Who should they have told? Perhaps the principal had received a command from the area superintendent.
    Those who admitted it and were remorseful or can prove they resisted in any way should suffer a suspension then be allowed to apply to teach in the state.

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