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Atlanta Cheating Scandal: 11 Educators Guilty of Changing Grades

Image: Atlanta Cheating Scandal: 11 Educators Guilty of Changing Grades
Donald Bullock, left, former Atlanta Public Schools Usher-Collier Heights Elementary testing coordinator, is led to a holding cell after a jury found him guilty in the Atlanta Public Schools test-cheating trial, Wednesday, April 1, 2015, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Kent D. Johnson, Pool)

By    |   Wednesday, 01 Apr 2015 06:44 PM

Eleven of the 12 people charged in the Atlanta school cheating scandal were found guilty on Wednesday, receiving jail time primarily for racketeering and false statements charges.

Twenty-one other educators indicted as a result of the 2009 investigation took plea deals; these 12 were the only ones who did not do so. Judge Jerry Baxter sent all but one to jail, according to CBS 46. One woman who is pregnant was out on bond until the sentencing.

“They have made their bed, and they're going to have to lie in it," Baxter said.

"We've been fighting for the children in our community, particularly those children who were deprived by this cheating scandal," Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard told CNN.

The scandal emerged after an investigation seven years ago determined that numerous educators “altered, fabricated, and falsely certified” test answers, CNN reported. Initially, it looked as if as many as 180 teachers from 44 different schools were implicated in changing scores. There was evidence of “cheating parties” where teachers gathered to erase and change answers, the news site said.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution in 2008 first reported on the investigations into why the student test scores had gone up, CNN said.

The jury deliberated for eight days, after six months of testimony.

"This has been a long, long, long journey," USA Today quoted Baxter before the verdict was read. "I know everyone here probably has emotions they can't describe. I know I do. But I want to tell you — I've been down here 42 years ... and I've never seen a jury that was more diligent. Whatever your verdict is, I'll defend it until I die.”

One educator, Dessa Curb, was found not guilty of all counts against her.

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Eleven of the 12 people charged in the Atlanta school cheating scandal were found guilty on Wednesday, receiving jail time primarily for racketeering and false statements charges.
atlanta, cheating, scandal, guilty
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2015-44-01
Wednesday, 01 Apr 2015 06:44 PM
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