Once Upon a Time in Atlanta

On running a school district like a criminal enterprise.

Bail hearings have begun at the Fulton County Courthouse in Atlanta, Georgia, where 35 educators, administrators, and one Superintendent are charged with everything from theft, racketeering, and violating the Corrupt Organizations Act, to making false statements and influencing witnesses (read: leaning on whistleblowers). While some parents sought to stop these teachers and principals from altering tests so they could collect bonuses for improved scores, it fortunately doesn’t appear that too many other parents were involved.

Atlanta Public Schools_Where Excuses Go to Die

It’s no Scorsese plot: squealers weren’t chased through parking lots with a pair of pliers, a baseball bat, or a 12-gauge. But your shrewdest criminal operations don’t need to resort to hostile messages. And not only had this particular operation been going on for a while, it’s part of the larger and more entrenched standardized testing debate itself. In other words, it’s part of the system itself. Read more