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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Cheating update: Georgia Dept. of Education and CRCT report

Lady Liberty before Georgia's Gold Dome.

The Office of Dr. John D. Barge, Georgia's School Superintendent, was approached by Wingcom Watchdog for a response to the recent CRCT cheating scandal in Atlanta Public Schools. Barge's department issues annual reports on system progress.

Justin Pauly, communications specialist & Georgia Board of Education liaison informed me that Melissa Fincher, associate superintendent of assessment and accountability, is "reviewing accountability implications and working with the system to serve the students impacted. Please understand that the GaDOE was informed of the investigation findings the same time the public was," Pauly said.

He referred me to this link: http://www.gadoe.org/pea_communications.aspx?ViewMode=1&obj=2048

"The state monitors (CRCT testing) but school systems are run independently of the Department (of Education). The Department creates the policy in which the school system implements," Pauly concluded. The Department of Education's website states that the Department of Education is responsible for the administration of the CRCT. He said the Atlanta Public Schools (APS) cheating investigation was started by former Governor Sonny Perdue.

Former Governor Sonny Perdue at Cedar Grove Middle School in Decatur, Ga.

On the Department's website, it states: "As part (of) meeting federal requirements for state standards and assessments systems, the CRCT was peer reviewed by a team of external experts in the fields of standards and assessments.

"This team was convened by the US Department of Education and considered evidence in the following areas: content and academic achievement standards; technical quality; alignment; inclusion; and scoring and reporting. The CRCT was found to meet nationally recognized professional and technical standards for assessment programs."


Kathy Cox was state superintendent between 2003 and 2009 when the alleged cheating occurred. According to Governor Deal's representative, Jen Talaber, "Gov. Deal was not governor at the time when Ms. Cox was superintendent, and it would not be appropriate for us to comment on what role, if any, she played in CRCT cheating. The CRCT report stands on its own," Talaber said.


Former Superintendent Kathy Cox, who resigned to accept a position as Chief Executive Officer for the U.S. Education Delivery Institute on July 1, 2010 in Washington, D.C., was called at her office.


A spokesperson for Ms. Cox, Luly Demaro, said, "Ms. Cox has no comments at this time."
Former Superintendent Kathy Cox in 2002.

©2011 Tomi Johnson. All rights reserved.

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