GA cheating scandal: teachers sentenced

Discussion in 'Debate & Marathon Threads Archive' started by Caesar753, Apr 14, 2015.

  1. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2003
    Messages:
    1,927
    Likes Received:
    158

    Apr 17, 2015

    Oh yeah, this tread reminds me of the old school principal in the little rural Fla school back in the 70s. Angry mother comes in regarding Jonothan's grade. Huffing and puffing. Mr Clark in his calm and grandfatherly voice replies: "Ms Jones now just what grade do you want him to have, we can change it right now" The look on her face was LMAO funny. They change the grade. The world does not change and Jonothan is still the same unmotivated underachieving child. Next.
     
  2. blazer

    blazer Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2009
    Messages:
    1,646
    Likes Received:
    370

    Apr 17, 2015

    It's not as if we are perfect in this regard in the UK.

    However if they jailed every cheating teacher here there would be no-one in the schools!
     
  3. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2003
    Messages:
    1,927
    Likes Received:
    158

    Apr 17, 2015

    I would be there and most of my peers I am sure. Cheating is stupid and proving to the idiots making policy and all these tests that schools are failing.
     
  4. blazer

    blazer Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2009
    Messages:
    1,646
    Likes Received:
    370

    Apr 17, 2015

    If the tests (here and in the US) were high stakes for the kids that is fine. But the system has made them high stakes for the schools. Either by affecting pay/budgets or, as in the Uk reputation through inspection. So no wonder lots of teachers massage the data.

    Our kids are nationally tested at age 11 before they come to us. These results are then used to predict target grades for them at age 16 which we have to hit or else. We know that there is rampant cheating in many of our feeder schools. The kids themselves even tell us what has gone on.
     
  5. vateacher757

    vateacher757 Cohort

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2007
    Messages:
    596
    Likes Received:
    2

    Apr 17, 2015

    My points exactly!

    I worked at a middle school last year and it was well known by the students that they would not "fail" regardless...so what incentive did they have to do any work and why come down on the teachers because Johnny is not passing and asking what are you going to implement to change that when Johnny knows he WILL pass anyway????

    Also when grades were done for the semester by the teacher I worked with what she posted and what some of the students received as a final grade after being manipulated by central office were not the same grade, they now passed. :dizzy:

    I am glad it made the national news as well I just feel the punishment was harsh and that now there needs to be a larger discussion about this very thing and perhaps hear from these educators as to what was said to them and why they felt they "had" to do it...perhaps a Senate hearing on true education reform....but if all that is going to happen is they are convicted and sent to prison I am angry!
     
  6. HistoryVA

    HistoryVA Devotee

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2013
    Messages:
    1,016
    Likes Received:
    38

    Apr 17, 2015

    That's sad and an interesting commentary on the education system in the UK.
     
  7. teacherguy111

    teacherguy111 Cohort

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2013
    Messages:
    575
    Likes Received:
    31

    Apr 17, 2015

    I wonder how this compares to Columbus, Ohio. Columbus city schools had a big cheating scandal.
     
  8. kcjo13

    kcjo13 Phenom

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2005
    Messages:
    4,395
    Likes Received:
    7

    Apr 17, 2015

    A lot, actually.

    I think some things need to be clarified here.

    1. This group that was convicted and sentenced was not all boots on the ground kindergarten teachers. Many of these people were the testing coordinators, administrators, instructional coaches, and-frankly-would have been the superintendent of schools had she not passed away already. And since not all APS teachers were tried and convicted, presumably only a small group decided to break the law.

    2. All of these people knew what they were doing was wrong, as evidenced by their use of gloves to avoid fingerprints, carrying tests in coolers to avoid detection, and after-hours, closed door "bubble parties".

    3. They all had the opportunity to lighten their sentence to what could be considered more appropriate for the crime committed (one who took the deal will spend WEEKENDS ONLY for the next six months in jail helping inmates earn their GED, for example), and only a few would admit wrongdoing. Even so, as first-time offenders, once they have completed their sentences and probation, their convictions will likely be erased.

    4. They didn't only change answers; several also told students the right answers and told the kids not to tell anyone.

    5. Think about the damage done to the reputation of these schools and districts-would you move there, buy a house there, put your kids in school there? Now, maybe. Then, my answer would be no.

    I'm not trying to change anyone's mind on this topic. Everyone is entitled to an opinion. And I do feel bad for these people-no one wants to see anyone go to jail. But I think people hear "teacher" and picture Miss Smiley in her apron with flowers on it reading story books to enthralled kiddos. No. Superintendent Hall and her top staff “created a culture of fear, intimidation and retaliation” that threatened teachers or other educators who tried to report it." Articles like this one make me realize that teachers are stuck in an impossible situation. But the bottom line is-these people systematically violated public trust and jeopardized the lives and education of CHILDREN, for their own personal gain. Did any give the bonus back? Refuse it to begin with?

    Everyone has choices. Every teacher knows what you are signing up for when you sign on the dotted line. NCLB may not be ideal, but it is the law.

    I know cheating happens all over the country. It's practically inevitable. But perhaps this conviction will stand to raise awareness and lessen that cheating.
     
  9. 3Sons

    3Sons Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2007
    Messages:
    2,018
    Likes Received:
    179

    Apr 17, 2015


    Of course it happens. But acknowledging that it happens is very different from making a veiled accusation that it's happening in this case. If he had backed it up with, "Here are the judge's previous decisions for whites and blacks, this is how other justices typically sentence defendants, and this is what the sentencing standards are" then he would have had something. As it is, he has, "I don't like the judgement, I think I'll accuse the judge of racism".

    That's what's irresponsible. It's feeding into a fire of suspicion without any evidence.

    I don't lose respect for someone because of a single post. Blazer, I'm fine with you generally, I just think here your post was hasty, at the very least.
     
  10. vateacher757

    vateacher757 Cohort

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2007
    Messages:
    596
    Likes Received:
    2

    Apr 17, 2015

    Interesting....as I googled all I could find was employees being fired and schools and employees having to pay back bonuses they received as a result.

    http://www.dispatch.com/content/sto...g_back_bonuses_from_schools_that_cheated.html
     
  11. amakaye

    amakaye Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2004
    Messages:
    2,397
    Likes Received:
    4

    Apr 17, 2015

    The biggest difference I see is that this resulted from manipulating the data so students' scores didn't count against the school--not actually falsifying a student's test so their score was inaccurate. To me, that's the biggest issue in the GA case--these students were receiving passing scores when they couldn't read! That just sets them up for continued failure down the line. Not that what happened in Columbus wasn't also wrong and unethical, but I see the actual changing of the tests in a different light.
     
  12. Jerseygirlteach

    Jerseygirlteach Groupie

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2010
    Messages:
    1,439
    Likes Received:
    2

    Apr 17, 2015

    kcjo13 - My point was that if, as you said, your main issue with what was done was that it prevented struggling students from getting the help they needed...Well, then, changing grades and passing students along for convenience and financial reasons is done all the time, throughout the U.S. If you polled most secondary teachers here, I bet they would tell you that it happens in their schools. So, if that's the big crime here, there are a lot more criminals than you might suspect.

    I - obviously - empathize a great deal with these teachers. It is undisputed that they were ordered to change the tests. As I alluded to previously, I have, in the past at a different district, been ordered to pass students that should not have passed - students that were too old to repeat grades again, students whose parents complained that they didn't think their children deserved to fail, or just if there were too many students to fit in the summer school program. I did it because I was ordered to do so. Maybe that makes me a criminal too.
     
  13. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2013
    Messages:
    4,256
    Likes Received:
    794

    Apr 17, 2015

    I honestly don't understand this idea. How is it setting them up for failure? If there were retention or remediation decisions being made solely on the basis of state test scores, that's bad practice all around. State testing also isn't meant as a qualifier or disqualifier for Special Ed or ESL services. Presumably if the kids actually couldn't read, that's the sort of thing their next teacher would pick up on. Or is the assumption that their next teacher would just trust test results completely without getting to know the students and their needs?

    I'm also curious... did every student get their tests altered, or was it only the "bubble" kids? If it's the second... is there really much of a difference between a kid who falls one question below the cut line vs a kid who is one question above the cut line? I had a kiddo one question above our cut line last year. So is it that he can read, but one more missed answer somewhere, he can't read?
     
  14. webmistress

    webmistress Devotee

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,082
    Likes Received:
    60

    Apr 18, 2015

    :thanks::thumb: Yes, America has a huge racism problem (well, as does the entire world actually). It's too much to go into...but Blacks are often sentenced harsher than whites for the same or similar crimes.

    I don't know why they didnt take the plea deal. That is certainly their mistake. And they did seem to have bad attitudes so I have lost some sympathy for them.
    However, if they were all white, regardless of the judge's race, they would have NEVER been facing this amount of prison time.

    The fact that so many white Americans, and some Blacks too, but especially since so many white Americans (who hold the power to change things) continue to deny that racism exists...well that's why racism continues to exist and destroy this country.

    I can't thank you enough for your post.

    HISTORY is what proves to us that this sentencing was racially biased. I'm not talking about the judge's history, I'm talking about the very FOUNDATION that this country's justice system was built on.

    Teachers of all races should definitely be educated on these type of things.

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




    http://www.eji.org/HighlightOct2014
     
  15. webmistress

    webmistress Devotee

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,082
    Likes Received:
    60

    Apr 18, 2015

    http://www.salon.com/2015/04/08/ame...nd_the_racist_underbelly_of_education_reform/

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


    "Over the past generation, we have watched the GOP, helped along by an impotent Democratic Party, systematically dismantle funding for public education, underpay teachers, and allow local school systems to institute punitive disciplinary measures that have turned our schools into a prison pipeline.

    At exactly the same moment, these reformers and their political counterparts George W. Bush (No Child Left Behind) and Barack Obama (Race to the Top) have instituted high-stakes testing, tied to financial incentives for teachers, as the solution to the structural risks overwhelmingly facing children of color.

    Meanwhile, test-cheating scandals have proliferated in locales across the country. In other urban locales like Baltimore, Houston and Philadelphia principals and teachers were fired and/or stripped of their licenses to teach. This is a punishment that fits the crime.

    Then there’s Michelle Rhee, the famed former chancellor of D.C. Public Schools who was accused of creating the very same culture of fear about test scores that Superintendent Beverly Hall has been accused of creating in Atlanta. Hall was charged with racketeering. So why was Rhee not subject to prosecution when test-score irregularities emerged in the District? (Bruce Dixon was already asking as much two years ago over at Black Agenda Report.)

    Not only has Rhee not been prosecuted, but she maintains a fairly high level of bipartisan support from conservatives and political centrists for her views on education reform.

    Hall’s trial was indefinitely postponed last year due to stage IV breast cancer. She died last month at 68 years old.

    Locking up Black women under the guise of caring about Black children is an unbelievable move in an educational environment that systematically denies both care and opportunity to Black children.

    Locking up Black women for racketeering when the system couldn’t be bothered to lock up even one of the bankers who gave disproportionate amounts of terrible home loans to Black women leading to a national economic crash and a disproportionate amount of home foreclosures among Black women in 2008 is patently unjust.

    Given that public schools are largely funded through property taxes and that Black children are overwhelming reared by Black single mothers, the failure to vigorously prosecute the financial institutions and lenders that gutted Black neighborhoods means that the system co-signed corporate acts of institutional violence against Black mothers and children, and against neighborhood schools in Black communities.

    But now we are expected to believe that prosecuting these teachers as racketeers is an act of justice. Nothing is just about making Black women sacrificial lambs of an educational system hellbent on throwing Black children away.

    The images of their handcuffed Black bodies being led in shame from the courtroom gives Black parents angry about the miseducation of their children a convenient target for their angst and outrage over a failing system.

    Meanwhile, the real racket – privatization and defunding of public schools, diversion of taxpayer resources away from education, and increasing political clout and payouts for school reformers proselytizing the false gospel of high stakes testing – gets obscured. And white children still get educated well, either in private schools or in suburban schools funded through a solid property tax base.

    Everything I am today, I owe to my mother and to a Black teacher who saw a spark in me and nurtured it. For so many exceptionally achieving Black people, a providential encounter with a Black teacher is the singular thing that made the difference. No other group of people systematically and structurally love and care about Black children more than Black mothers and Black (usually female) teachers. They have been the ones holding aloft the banner emblazoned with the revolutionary idea that Black Lives Matter, before it was ever a slogan upon which to build a movement. An attack on Black teachers is an attack on Black children, Black families, and Black communities. We should stand in solidarity with these teachers and these students and say, “Not on our watch.”

    -------

    Brittney Cooper is a contributing writer at Salon, and teaches Women's and Gender Studies and Africana Studies at Rutgers. Follow her on Twitter at @professorcrunk.
     
  16. a2z

    a2z Maven

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    5,884
    Likes Received:
    1,803

    Apr 18, 2015

    Unfortunately, state test results are used all the time to disqualify kids from getting help because, if passed, it is a demonstration that the child has the capability and ability and any low grades in the classroom is due to reasons that are not due to disabilities. Then if you have teachers inflating classroom grades via methods employed in the classroom or just low-level work in the classroom, the grades back-up the test scores and the scores back-up the grades.

    Another reason for the next year teacher to explain the child's reading failure is poor parenting over the summer creating a huge loss in skills. I've heard that one used a million times. The other reason that is given for poor skills is that the child just decided not to try anymore and is capable (due to test scores and last years grades) but doesn't want to do his best.

    There are many ways people can justify failure if something else indicates capability. It is done all the time.
     
  17. a2z

    a2z Maven

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    5,884
    Likes Received:
    1,803

    Apr 18, 2015

    There is no way to prove what you are saying in the above sentence. You can try to correlate past sentences to this case, but that is the best you can do. It does not prove what would be done if they were white. It could very well be that it isn't the color but the attitude of the people that caused a more harsh sentence.
     
  18. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2013
    Messages:
    4,256
    Likes Received:
    794

    Apr 18, 2015

    So basically, everything is the fault of those darn incompetent teachers.
     
  19. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Groupie

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Messages:
    1,288
    Likes Received:
    455

    Apr 18, 2015

    The Georgia teachers were convicted based on statistical sampling. It was good enough proof to put them in prison longer than a murderer.

    The same kind of proof supports the theory of rampant racism in the US.
     
  20. vateacher757

    vateacher757 Cohort

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2007
    Messages:
    596
    Likes Received:
    2

    Apr 18, 2015

    This is so typical from those who do not understand racism and how it has been able to survive for as long as it has.

    There is data there to prove the disparity in sentencing, education. who ends up in sped classes~blacks more than whites and black boys are labelled ED more than anyone else, housing, employment and the list goes on......

    Who do you think controls the so called "proof".

    If that young man in Charleston had not videotaped the murder of the black man running away from the police officer there would not have been any "proof" of the TRUTH in that case......they were going with his version of the facts until the video "proof" surfaced. :dizzy:

    ETA: and some states, Texas for one, are trying to make it against the law to videotape police officers.......I wonder why?????
     
  21. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2013
    Messages:
    2,985
    Likes Received:
    435

    Apr 18, 2015

    Except all the bullet holes in his back.

    I agree though, every police officer should have a body camera.
     
  22. vateacher757

    vateacher757 Cohort

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2007
    Messages:
    596
    Likes Received:
    2

    Apr 18, 2015

    Your statement in bold is laughable and is really telling as how naive some people are.

    The bullet holes in his back did not stop the officer nor the department from running with the typical "feared for my life" "he was grabbing my weapon" etc story and make what the officer did (shoot the man in the back) justified.
     
  23. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2013
    Messages:
    2,985
    Likes Received:
    435

    Apr 18, 2015

    Of course the officer will make up all kinds of crazy excuses to justify murder, just like the victims do when they commit crimes and avoid arrest.

    Except what I find laughable is your belief the officer would not have been arrested and pending a trial.
     
  24. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2013
    Messages:
    4,256
    Likes Received:
    794

    Apr 18, 2015

    I would like to believe that the officer would have been charged with or without the tape, but after some of the recent cases which have not resulted in an indictment (even WITH a tape), the cynicist in me says there's absolutely no chance of an indictment if that video didn't exist.
     
  25. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2013
    Messages:
    2,985
    Likes Received:
    435

    Apr 18, 2015

    Sure, we can disagree.
    I will say I am in favor of all officers wearing body cameras.
     
  26. a2z

    a2z Maven

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2010
    Messages:
    5,884
    Likes Received:
    1,803

    Apr 18, 2015

    Wow. I guess you support inflated grades for students who are years below grade level.
     
  27. webmistress

    webmistress Devotee

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,082
    Likes Received:
    60

    Apr 18, 2015

    Thank you so much VAteacher. There are book loads worth of evidence to evaluate all types of patterns regarding this case, and all cases in the US dating back to slavery.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. vickilyn,
  2. czacza,
  3. MrsC,
  4. CaliforniaRPCV,
  5. bella84
Total: 367 (members: 8, guests: 335, robots: 24)
test