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View Full Version : Probe of Atlanta schools finds principals & teachers cheating to improve test scores



pwaldo
07-06-2011, 09:24 PM
http://content.usatoday.com/communities/ondeadline/post/2011/07/probe-of-atlanta-schools-finds-principals-teachers-directed-cheating-on-tests/1


On Tuesday, Gov. Nathan Deal released only a two-page summary of the report showing organized, systemic cheating in Atlantic Public Schools by scores of educators, including 38 principals.

Deal says "there will be consequences" for educators who cheated and has forwarded the findings to three district attorneys as well as state and city education officials.

According to the report, the alleged culture even prompted one third-grade teacher to tell investigators that the culture at APS is that if you are not a "team player," there are ways that the school system can get back at you. The teacher was afraid of retaliation if she did not go along with cheating, saying, "APS is run like the mob."

The report calls teacher test-tampering "an open secret" at at least one school, Gideons Elementary, where a group of teachers one weekend brought students' answer sheets to a teacher's home and held a "changing party."

Other teachers changed students' answers at school after hours. In one case, the school's principal told teachers, "If anyone asks you anything about this just tell them you don't know. You did not. Stick with it just stick to the story and it will all go away."

--50% of the classes at one middle school showed unusual signs of erasures of wrong answers on state-mandated tests and substitution of correct answers. The report says the principal at the school ordered a teacher and two staff members who find wrong answers to "make them right."

--Teachers at one elementary school used "non-verbal signals" to get students to change wrong answers and also arranged the seating so that some students could cheat off others.

--Cheating was detected at 44 of 56 schools examined.

--178 educators, including 38 principals, were found to have engaged in cheating. Of that group, 82 confessed to cheating.

andrewhoya
07-06-2011, 09:31 PM
This is crazy.

INTIMADATOR2007
07-06-2011, 09:33 PM
As a resident of georgia 20 miles south of Atlanta , and I work in Atlanta , I can say this is not shocking to hear concidering what comes out of that cesspool of a city .Beverly Hall should be jailed for what she has done to the screwel system in Atlanta .

AUTaxMan
07-06-2011, 10:21 PM
Not surprising at all. Probably goes on in a lot more places than we would like to believe.

mrveggieman
07-07-2011, 07:41 AM
I live in Georgia too. I'm not going to comment on some of the nonesense that goes on here but I will tell it to you like this. It's not a black or white thing nor it is a republican or democratic thing. Everyone has their hand in the cookie jar here. SMH.

AUTaxMan
07-07-2011, 08:25 AM
I live in Georgia too. I'm not going to comment on some of the nonesense that goes on here but I will tell it to you like this. It's not a black or white thing nor it is a republican or democratic thing. Everyone has their hand in the cookie jar here. SMH.

I'd be willing to bet that 90+% of all teachers and administrators in the Atlanta city schools vote democrat.

redsoxx11
07-07-2011, 08:44 AM
I'd be willing to bet that 90+% of all teachers and administrators in the Atlanta city schools vote democrat.

I'm willing to bet 90% of the people on wall street that almost caused the 2nd great depression vote Republican

I'm willing to bet that 99% of the people in the BUsh administration that thought going to Iraq to settle a beef were Republican
I'm willing to bet that 99% of the people who kill abortion DR's are Republican
I'm willing to bet that 90% of the people who thought Obama was born in Kenya were Republicans

pghin08
07-07-2011, 08:58 AM
This is not a party issue, it's a corruption issue. It also helps highlight some of the issues in our education system, namely our dependence on standardized testing.

mrveggieman
07-07-2011, 09:09 AM
I'd be willing to bet that 90+% of all teachers and administrators in the Atlanta city schools vote democrat.


How are you going to call me out for playing along party lines and you just did the same thing. Do I need to provide examples of republican corruption too? Or you simply going to to dismiss it and say the devil made them do it?

AUTaxMan
07-07-2011, 10:37 AM
How are you going to call me out for playing along party lines and you just did the same thing. Do I need to provide examples of republican corruption too? Or you simply going to to dismiss it and say the devil made them do it?

I don't deny that there is much corruption on both sides of the aisle, but my comment in this particular instance is correct, and you know it.

mrveggieman
07-07-2011, 10:42 AM
I don't deny that there is much corruption on both sides of the aisle, but my comment in this particular instance is correct, and you know it.


Most politicians in Georgia regardless of party lines are corrupt. That is something both republicans and dems have in common. :kiss:

AUTaxMan
07-07-2011, 10:45 AM
most politicians everywhere regardless of party lines are corrupt. That is something both republicans and dems have in common. :kiss:

fify

pghin08
07-07-2011, 10:47 AM
I don't deny that there is much corruption on both sides of the aisle, but my comment in this particular instance is correct, and you know it.

But it's still irrelevant.

AUTaxMan
07-07-2011, 10:55 AM
But it's still irrelevant.

I think it's relevant to the voters of atlanta who are going to want to reform the school system.

mrveggieman
07-07-2011, 10:59 AM
I think it's relevant to the voters of atlanta who are going to want to reform the school system.


If you take out one corrupt political party and replace them with another corrupt political party how is that going to help the school system??

pghin08
07-07-2011, 11:04 AM
I think it's relevant to the voters of atlanta who are going to want to reform the school system.

You reform the school system by getting rid of the people who are cheating it. Not if they're a democrat or republican. Your comment is totally irrelevant. If I were an Atlanta voter, I couldn't care less what party the accused was from, I would just want them disciplined for trying to usurp the system.

AUTaxMan
07-07-2011, 11:07 AM
You reform the school system by getting rid of the people who are cheating it. Not if they're a democrat or republican. Your comment is totally irrelevant. If I were an Atlanta voter, I couldn't care less what party the accused was from, I would just want them disciplined for trying to usurp the system.

If the overwhelming majority of the people were from the same party, you don't think that it would make you suspect of a pattern of behavior within that party's educator/politicians?

mrveggieman
07-07-2011, 11:09 AM
You reform the school system by getting rid of the people who are cheating it. Not if they're a democrat or republican. Your comment is totally irrelevant. If I were an Atlanta voter, I couldn't care less what party the accused was from, I would just want them disciplined for trying to usurp the system.


Can I get an amen!! :cheer2:

pghin08
07-07-2011, 11:18 AM
If the overwhelming majority of the people were from the same party, you don't think that it would make you suspect of a pattern of behavior within that party's educator/politicians?

I'm saying that I couldn't give a crap. I'm smart enough to know that corruption knows no party lines. I want people out of office who are abusing their power, no matter their affiliation. Just because John Edwards is a Democrat who cheated on his wife doesn't mean that I, as a Democrat, would do the same thing if I were to run for office.

Star_Cards
07-07-2011, 11:19 AM
Why in the heck does someone always have to make a thread a R vs D thread?!?!

I bet 99% of these people that were part of the cheating like to eat cake with their ice cream.

As for the actual topic, this seems to be a product of performance based funding. Seems like if the teachers put as much time into helping the kids learn as they did into the cheating and having "change parties" maybe some of the kids could have actually benefitted from them. Very sad to see teachers that have more major concerns over actually teaching.

Star_Cards
07-07-2011, 11:23 AM
I don't deny that there is much corruption on both sides of the aisle, but my comment in this particular instance is correct, and you know it.

Can you post your sources that make your statement correct? making even an educated assumption and claiming to be correct is a quite different.

and even if they did vote Dem, what leap are you trying to make? all dems are cheats? all dems are corrupt?

Star_Cards
07-07-2011, 11:28 AM
If the overwhelming majority of the people were from the same party, you don't think that it would make you suspect of a pattern of behavior within that party's educator/politicians?

Do you really think a normal school teacher is that connected to a political party? What real pull or connection do they have? If myself and my neighbor vote for the same person in an election that really doesn't do much justice in comparing us as people or our ideals. Defining these cheaters as Ds or Rs is pointless in my opinion. They are cheaters and should be fired in my opinion regardless of how they voted.

Star_Cards
07-07-2011, 11:31 AM
I'm saying that I couldn't give a crap. I'm smart enough to know that corruption knows no party lines. I want people out of office who are abusing their power, no matter their affiliation. Just because John Edwards is a Democrat who cheated on his wife doesn't mean that I, as a Democrat, would do the same thing if I were to run for office.

good point. Besides, what type of pull or influence do you think a school teacher has within a political party?

AUTaxMan
07-07-2011, 11:31 AM
Do you really think a normal school teacher is that connected to a political party? What real pull or connection do they have? If myself and my neighbor vote for the same person in an election that really doesn't do much justice in comparing us as people or our ideals. Defining these cheaters as Ds or Rs is pointless in my opinion. They are cheaters and should be fired in my opinion regardless of how they voted.

Not talking about the teachers.

dfr52
07-07-2011, 12:12 PM
This is not a party issue, it's a corruption issue. It also helps highlight some of the issues in our education system, namely our dependence on standardized testing.

Exactly, success can't be measured based on the results of one test. How foolish is it to think that a whole year of learning and growth can me summed up in multiple choice test? The test ignores the fact that students learn differently and progress at different rates as they mature.

Star_Cards
07-07-2011, 12:16 PM
This is not a party issue, it's a corruption issue. It also helps highlight some of the issues in our education system, namely our dependence on standardized testing.

exactly.

AUTaxMan
07-07-2011, 12:23 PM
Exactly, success can't be measured based on the results of one test. How foolish is it to think that a whole year of learning and growth can me summed up in multiple choice test? The test ignores the fact that students learn differently and progress at different rates as they mature.

Totally agree with this. I also just learned yesterday that if a kid is flagged with a special condition such as LD or ADD, the kid cannot be failed under federal law. Doesn't matter if the kid has no interest in learning or is just not very intelligent.

mrveggieman
07-07-2011, 01:12 PM
Totally agree with this. I also just learned yesterday that if a kid is flagged with a special condition such as LD or ADD, the kid cannot be failed under federal law. Doesn't matter if the kid has no interest in learning or is just not very intelligent.


Interesting. Could you please provide a link to such?

AUTaxMan
07-07-2011, 02:20 PM
Interesting. Could you please provide a link to such?

I haven't looked it up. Was told that by two elementary ed teachers.

duane1969
07-07-2011, 03:44 PM
I haven't looked it up. Was told that by two elementary ed teachers.

You were mislead. My wife is an elementary principal and I can tell you that the final grade/score is not impacted by special needs status. Special needs are accomodated but the same info is tested and it is scored the same.

I know for a fact that the special ed cells are grouped into the overall school data from state standardized test. The special ed areas are expected to show growth just like the non-special ed areas.

My guess is that what you were told was a blend of other laws. I know that here in WV it is nearly impossible to expel a kid from school with a specialized education plan, but they still get whatever score they get on their work and can be failed for the year. Having ADHD or anger management issues doesn't get them a free pass on standardized testing.

------------------------------------------------------------

I should also add that IMO the displeasure with standardized test stems from people's inability to properly use the data. Instead of being seen as just a way to test the children the data should be used to measure the effectiveness of the teacher and figure out what areas need to be more closely addressed in the classroom. A good teacher will regularly use formative assessment to measure where the students are and to re-teach weak areas. The final standardized test gives a teacher and principal a chance to eveolve a better long-term plan. Unfortunatelly most educators miss this aspect and just see the test as a way to "get them".

AUTaxMan
07-07-2011, 03:50 PM
You were mislead. My wife is an elementary principal and I can tell you that the final grade/score is not impacted by special needs status. Special needs are accomodated but the same info is tested and it is scored the same.

I know for a fact that the special ed cells are grouped into the overall school data from state standardized test. The special ed areas are expected to show growth just like the non-special ed areas.

My guess is that what you were told was a blend of other laws. I know that here in WV it is nearly impossible to expel a kid from school with a specialized education plan, but they still get whatever score they get on their work and can be failed for the year. Having ADHD or anger management issues doesn't get them a free pass on standardized testing.

I have heard they essentially get unlimited time and tries to pass the standardized tests, though, so essentially they cannot fail. I hope I am wrong.

dfr52
07-07-2011, 03:53 PM
I haven't looked it up. Was told that by two elementary ed teachers.

Its probably a state by state rule, but that's the case in Ohio as well. In fact those students who receive services are nearly impossible to expel and can only be suspended for a certain amount of time.

redsoxx11
07-07-2011, 03:54 PM
Can you post your sources that make your statement correct? making even an educated assumption and claiming to be correct is a quite different.

and even if they did vote Dem, what leap are you trying to make? all dems are cheats? all dems are corrupt?

He can't post a link because there isn't one. He just made it up. But I see the LINK police havn't come rusing in yet. I guess 90% of the people who want to see links are his friends.

duane1969
07-07-2011, 03:56 PM
Actually ALL students get unlimited time. They start testing shortly after school starts and can not be interrupted, not even for lunch. If they are not finished then their lunch is brought to them. I know of teachers who have stayed until 4:30 and 5:00 waiting on a student to finish a test, but that is the right of all students.

I have never heard of taking the test more than one time or until it is passed. That is against the law. Each student logs into a website to take the test. Once they submit the test it is done. There are no do-overs. In fact nobody even knows if they passed or failed until several months later. They do not receive an immediate score.

Whoever told you these things was either lying or had no idea what they were talking about.

duane1969
07-07-2011, 04:02 PM
He can't post a link because there isn't one. He just made it up. But I see the LINK police havn't come rusing in yet. I guess 90% of the people who want to see links are his friends.

So if we ask for support of a claim we are the link police?

The very basic precept of debate is that you have a supportable position. If you don't want to support you position then that is fine but don't expect your unsupported position to be taken seriously. "Because I said so" is not a valid argument.

redsoxx11
07-07-2011, 04:05 PM
So if we ask for support of a claim we are the link police?

The very basic precept of debate is that you have a supportable position. If you don't want to support you position then that is fine but don't expect your unsupported position to be taken seriously. "Because I said so" is not a valid argument.

I've never said "because I said so" about 90% of my posts that need a link have it. The position we are talkign about here is just some made up arbitary percentage, with NO factual evidence. And not 1 of the people I have seen responding to my posts crying about a link have said 1 thing about this. So it stand to reason that there is colusion.

mrveggieman
07-07-2011, 04:09 PM
I've never said "because I said so" about 90% of my posts that need a link have it. The position we are talkign about here is just some made up arbitary percentage, with NO factual evidence. And not 1 of the people I have seen responding to my posts crying about a link have said 1 thing about this. So it stand to reason that there is colusion.

I get asked for links by our conservative buddies all the time. When I do show links they still complain :rant:. There's just no pleasing some people on here.

duane1969
07-07-2011, 04:10 PM
I've never said "because I said so" about 90% of my posts that need a link have it. The position we are talkign about here is just some made up arbitary percentage, with NO factual evidence. And not 1 of the people I have seen responding to my posts crying about a link have said 1 thing about this. So it stand to reason that there is colusion.

Ha!! So now it is a conspiracy to get you? :pound: :pound: :pound: :pound:

duane1969
07-07-2011, 04:11 PM
I get asked for links by our conservative buddies all the time. When I do show links they still complain :rant:. There's just no pleasing some people on here.

I am a logical, intellectual, educated person. If you show me a link that supports your position then I always accept it.

AUTaxMan
07-07-2011, 04:19 PM
i am a logical, intellectual, educated person. If you show me a link that supports your position then i always accept it.

+1

sanfran22
07-07-2011, 09:31 PM
I am a logical, intellectual, educated person. If you show me a link that supports your position then I always accept it.
Unless it's from islamaphobia.net:sign0020: j/k

tutall
07-07-2011, 10:43 PM
Exactly, success can't be measured based on the results of one test. How foolish is it to think that a whole year of learning and growth can me summed up in multiple choice test? The test ignores the fact that students learn differently and progress at different rates as they mature.

My response to this has always been what do you think is a better answer? I mean, on a scale outside of school we are always going to be judged against our peers. In my profession I am put up against other people that do my job in New York, Chicago, Miami, Dallas, Los Angelas.... I work in Kendallville IN.... Town of 7000 people. It doesnt matter though we are all judged the same. It is the same in schooling. We need a test that measures what all people across a certain area are learning. Educators then take the trends and find ways to fix something if it is broken. I took many of these standardized tests and it isnt like they are hard. Sure they take concentration and I was and still am a pretty good test taker but it isnt rocket science. If you cant pass it because "you arent a test taker" maybe you do need to stay back longer and make it so you are a better test taker. I think a lot of times we forget that school is there to make you ready for real life. Lets face it, 90 percent of kids will never use what they learn in algebra, advanced english, or speech but we still need a way to judge teachers to see if those subjects are being taught correctly.

dfr52
07-08-2011, 10:53 AM
My response to this has always been what do you think is a better answer? I mean, on a scale outside of school we are always going to be judged against our peers. In my profession I am put up against other people that do my job in New York, Chicago, Miami, Dallas, Los Angelas.... I work in Kendallville IN.... Town of 7000 people. It doesnt matter though we are all judged the same. It is the same in schooling. We need a test that measures what all people across a certain area are learning. Educators then take the trends and find ways to fix something if it is broken. I took many of these standardized tests and it isnt like they are hard. Sure they take concentration and I was and still am a pretty good test taker but it isnt rocket science. If you cant pass it because "you arent a test taker" maybe you do need to stay back longer and make it so you are a better test taker. I think a lot of times we forget that school is there to make you ready for real life. Lets face it, 90 percent of kids will never use what they learn in algebra, advanced english, or speech but we still need a way to judge teachers to see if those subjects are being taught correctly.

It doesn't work that way though. Sure test taking skills can be improved but not every student/person demonstrates knowledge and understanding through a standardized test. Standardized testing only addresses linguistic and logical-mathematical intelligences so individuals who are strong in those areas usually succeed.