APS Cheating Scandal Racketeering Verdict: Who Set Up the Racket? (Opinion)

by Janita Poe/@AtlantaPolitics

ATLANTA — Eleven Atlanta Public Schools educators, now convicted felons, were hauled off to paddy wagons yesterday, after the verdict in a test cheating scandal was read about 2 p.m.

The defendants were found guilty of racketeering — a crime tied to the bloody mobster era of the previous century that suggests a systematic “racket” to make money off of innocent citizens.

So, my question today is this: Who set up the racket?

Who created “No Child Left Behind” and the government-backed financial incentives to produce the high test scores?

Who pressured these educators to achieve success with some of society’s most economically and socially challenged youth, “by any means necessary?”

But, wait. That’s not all.

Who left poor kids behind in a rush to the suburbs in search of “better” schools for their own children?

Who turned the other cheek and handed off public education’s most complex challenges to the least-prepared, least-qualified teachers and academic leaders?

Folks. This country and it’s racist, classist, egomaniacal underpinnings is in need of some self analysis.

Because what happened in that courtroom yesterday did not change a durn thing for the education of youth in our lowest-income communities.

And nothing will change unless and until we Americans– all races, both genders — stop pointing the finger and seriously commit ourselves to helping the least of these.

One thought on “APS Cheating Scandal Racketeering Verdict: Who Set Up the Racket? (Opinion)

  1. Folks, again, we’re ALL guilty of failing urban kids: the cheating educators, yes but also —> their often-unmarried mom and dad, entire school systems, affluent whites and blacks, lawmakers, the governors. All of us. The kids have no real home structure; whites and blacks with means run to the suburbs to get away from troubled kids; no one wants tax dollars to go towards good programs that address systemic problems rooted in their/our slave/Jim Crow history, and so on… as for the bonuses, why were we giving bonus to the least prepared teachers/most stressed educators to do magic and solve a problem that is about more than grades? The children don’t have the basics: sound two-parent homes with parental involvement in the schools to begin with. Discipline in those places is a joke. We’re all guilty of having a society that allows for that and now we are throwing educators in prison, as if that is the solution.


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