America Is Criminalizing Black Teachers: Atlanta’s Cheating Scandal and the Racist Underbelly of Education Reform

Last week, an Atlanta jury convicted 11 teachers and school administrators of racketeering in a system-wide cheating scandal. Yes, you read that correctly. Teachers and administrators inflating student scores on standardized tests is now considered “organized crime” in this country, and is punishable by more 20 years in prison, in these cases.

I am an educator. I am a black woman who may someday mother a black child. I have taught other black mothers’ children. Much of my educational success in elementary school is directly attributable to high performance on standardized tests that caused my white teachers to notice me and intervene on my behalf to get me “tracked” into higher-achieving classrooms. I believe all children deserve access to a good, high-quality, public education.

Therefore, I don’t have to condone cheating in any form (and I don’t) to assert that what has happened in Atlanta to these teachers is a travesty. The pictures that emerged last week of handcuffed black schoolteachers being led out of Southern courtrooms in one of the country’s largest urban black school systems were absolutely heartbreaking.

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Posted by The NON-Conformist

 

 

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2 thoughts on “America Is Criminalizing Black Teachers: Atlanta’s Cheating Scandal and the Racist Underbelly of Education Reform

  1. I’m here in Atlanta. Yeah, they were wrong. They took money and cheated the kids. The parents of these children should also be jailed should they serve time. I mean, they SHOULD be more vested than teachers. However,, we know the outcome would be so different if they weren’t folk of color.

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