A few gems quoted from the AJC article cited below:
“If anyone asks you anything about this just tell them you don’t know,” the report said Salters said. He told teachers to “just stick to the story and it will all go away.”
Principal Gwendolyn Benton, who has since left, obstructed the investigation, too, the report said, when she threatened teachers by saying she would “sue them out the ass” if they “slandered” her to the GBI.
Another told a teacher who saw tampering that if she did not “keep her mouth shut,” she would “be gone.”
At Venetian Hills, a group of teachers and administrators who dubbed themselves “the chosen ones” convened to change answers in the afternoons or during makeup testing days, investigators found. Principal Clarietta Davis, a testing coordinator told investigators, wore gloves while erasing to avoid leaving fingerprints on answer sheets.
Here is the article: http://www.ajc.com/news/investigation-into-aps-cheating-1001375.html
So, do you trust your government to properly educate your kids? Do you trust people who are focused on advancing their career and getting honors and recognition while they claim to put your kid's future as their highest goal?
Don't get me wrong - I'm not saying all teachers or educators act like this. There are definitely some fantastic teachers out there who genuinely take interest in the kid's success. But it only takes one bad educator to poison the lot, as the article states. Teachers who would have not participated in the cheating scandal did so simply to protect their own job, or even their life.
I really, really, really hope the higher-ranking educators have the book thrown at them, with the maximum penalty allowed by law for lying to investigators, plus some other charges dealing with child endangerment, as these educators were knowingly and purposefully harming these children, by denying them the help they needed. Since the kids appeared to know the subjects they were being tested on, they did not get the additional help they would have. The teachers can probably be let off more lightly, though, since many of them were threatened. Still, that does not make their actions right.
Still, you know what befuddles me the most? People turn their noses at parents who see these problems but cannot afford private school, so turn to home education. I trust many, many parents more than these lying, deceitful, self-righteous, arrogant, and self-centered "educators" who we so willingly trust our children to. The last thing my parents would have done on my tests is alter my answers. They cared for me as a person - they loved me as their child - which is infinitely more than you can say for these "educators" who see your little Johnny as just one more statistic to manipulate.
I can't count how many people have tried to tell me that my parents did a great disservice to me by teaching me at home. One shining star of an example was a guy who was chatting with me before a meeting at work, and said (unaware of my background) that none of "those" kids have any chance at succeeding in life. I asked him what his college-age kid was up to, and he laughed and said he just got off the phone with him and he was asking for more money. I politely noted that I was home schooled and that we were sitting in the conference room of a fortune 100 company, and I was a year younger than his kid.
I hope each one of those principles is arrested, and if I wasn't gainfully employed, you could bet your last dollar I would try to be present for each one of those arrests to cheer. Like I said, throw the book at them. How dare they act as they did.
[Edited 2011-07-06 10:00:40]