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CRCT probe nears end

— — CRCT investigators Mike Bowers and Robert Wilson spent the last week in the city, interviewing administrators and teachers as the CRCT cheating probe of 11 Dougherty County elementary schools enters the final days of the investigative process.

“Robert and I have reinterviewed a couple of people in some troubling areas,” Wilson, a former DeKalb County attorney general, said. “We’re trying to get to the truth; Mike and I are trying to see if we can figure it out. It’s been really interesting.”

Bowers said that investigators have conducted nearly 600 interviews — some multiple times with certain individuals — and that they have begun to write their report for Gov. Nathan Deal.

“We ought to wrap up the interviews next week,” Bowers, a former Georgia attorney general, said. “We still have to fully analyze the data, but we are about 99 percent finished with the investigative work. We hope to have the final report finished by early December.”

Howard Stiller, the attorney representing members of the Georgia Association of Educators, said that principals and teachers caught up in the probe’s net have begun to retain council.

“I’d just like to say that the majority of Dougherty County’s principals and teachers are not involved with or accused of any misconduct,” Stiller said. “And I cannot tell you the number of people who will face further legal difficulties because I honestly don’t know.”

Stiller added that Chris Cohilas will represent PAGE (Professional Association of Georgia Educators) members, while several non-union members have retained counsel independently.

Bowers said recently that as many as 10 principals and 50 teachers could be caught up in the investigation.

Dougherty County School Board Attorney Tommy Coleman is currently putting together a list of between 10 and 15 names of potential administrative tribunal members to submit to DCSS Superintendent Joshua Murfree, who will then select members of the panel.

Reportedly, no Dougherty County residents will be on the tribunal.

Once the investigators’ report is made public, school employees named in the report will be brought before the tribunal, which will then make recommendations to the Dougherty School Board.

The board will then make a determination on each individual.

“You’re going to have stuff to write about for quite a while,” Stiller said. “They (the employees) will still have an appeals process that can go all the way to Superior Court.”

Comments

supersquawker 2 years, 8 months ago

Terry, it's "retain Counsel" I'm pretty sure.

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supersquawker 2 years, 8 months ago

This situation should be "handled at the District level", as should all controversial and potentially embarassing situations. Just ask Murfree if you don't believe me.

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ameek86 2 years, 8 months ago

lol... good eye with the "council/counsel" thing.

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chinaberry25 2 years, 8 months ago

Yeah, especially if you get on TV and lie.

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whattheheck 2 years, 8 months ago

Time to "go to the mat" with this one. Make a stand and decide we are going to do whatever is required to get the cheaters out. I would still like to know whether and how teachers can receive extra compensation by improving test scores and what the amounts are/can be in general terms, not directed to named individuals at this point..

In the future. there should be monitors in the classrooms--all--on test day. I know there are without doubt those who did nothing out of line but in our society we are no longer allowed to single out the ones under suspicion for extra scrutiny. Sorry it has to be this way--but it does.

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LuLu 2 years, 8 months ago

I wonder if all these teachers have children in the school system. Free lunches would be one way they could receive extra compensation.

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coachjohnson42 2 years, 8 months ago

The only people running their mouth about DCSS cheating are the ones who "flew" to Lee County in hopes of finding streets made of milk and honey, but found nothing but dirt roads and pine trees. No school system is perfect and they all have problems. (Including private schools.) The people who were cheating will be dealt with, so give it a rest. Ask the Principal of LCHS (Kevin Dowling) if his school is perfect and see what he says....You would be shocked to hear some of his horror stories. So, if you live in a glass house, dont throw stones.

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mrnobody 2 years, 8 months ago

No doubt every school/school system has problems. The only difference is Lee County and private schools in the area aren't under investigation and in the news for cheating and fraud. Dougherty County's problems obviously aren't your everyday typical school problems.

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supersquawker 2 years, 8 months ago

Let's all just live and let live and we will all just live by the motto "Get what you can and can all you get" and as it says in the Good Book "Every man did what was right in his own eyes" and God just let them have what they wanted and the end result was chaos and degradation. Sounds Great, Coach!

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coachjohnson42 2 years, 8 months ago

SuperSquawker, you sensationalize and exaggerate. Its not that serious dude. Why cant you give it a rest? The cheaters will be dealt with....Somebody has got to take the fall for the cheating scandal and Dr. Murfree has so much heat on his behind from the public until he will make examples of those individuals to send a message to the public as well as his teachers. So, if its blood you want, its blood you will get.......but what good is that ???? Who eventually loses? Do you even care??? No.....so, give it a rest.

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waltspecht 2 years, 8 months ago

The good it does Coach, it sends a clear message. You failed to do your job, and then tried to cheat your way to success on paper. Thats not acceptable.You chose to do the crime, so now do the time.The more we accept or allow such actions, the further we fall into the hole of ignorance and servitude. How do you propose the system make up for the loss of learning we paid for and the students will be paying for in the future? Remember, no matter where you live, Dougherty County or Lee County, you subsidized the school system if you paid Federal Taxes.

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coachjohnson42 2 years, 8 months ago

You are speaking as if the accused are guilty already!! You have not even heard their side of the story. This newspaper is clearly against DCSS educators and have convinced its readers that the DCSS is corrupt. Every chance they get to put an educator on the front page for any little thing is evidence of that. For the past year, they have put administrators, teachers, supervisors,and anyone else in the DCSS on the front page for unfounded or unproven allegations. That alone curves public opinion and "tries" those people in the court of public opinion. On the flip side, if they have cheated, stole money, or broke the law, then by all means, punish them. But stop trying to deliberatley exploit mis-haps of DCSS educators/employees to promote your witch-hunting agenda. (It takes away from the credibility of the Albany Herald)

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