Mayor Reed: Everyone holds blame for cheating - CBS46 News

Mayor Reed: Everyone holds blame for cheating

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A somber Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed spoke openly about the repercussions of the Atlanta Public Schools cheating scandal.

Reed said the findings from the investigation have led to one of his darkest days in office.

"Yesterday morning was really the hardest day I have had as mayor of Atlanta or anytime," Reed said. "Just to hear all of it laid out in a fashion, that is almost irrefutable, by a serious person (Gov. Deal) is really, very hard."

The 800 page report released on Tuesday is something Reed said was hard to take in. He listened to every word of Governor Nathan Deal's announcement hanging on to every word as Deal revealed fact after fact that cheating in the school district reached the highest levels of leadership.

"Thousands of children were harmed by the 2009 CRCT cheating by being denied remedial education because of their inflated CRCT scores. We found cheating in 44 of the 56 schools we examined (78.6 percent). There were 38 principals of those 56 schools (67.9 percent) found to be responsible for, or directly involved in, cheating," Deal said.

"We determined that 178 teachers and principals in the Atlanta Public Schools System cheated. Of the 178, 82 confessed to this misconduct," he said.

Reed said given some of the statistical issues with the CRCT testing scores, city leaders should have realized something was amiss.

"We all have a part of the blame here," said Reed. "The statistical differences certainly should have shocked people within the profession, and I think we should have looked harder as well. I think that we will turn this into something positive. We are going to stop the harm. There were children being moved and advanced that shouldn't have. We are going to let everyone know, it is all hands on deck. But, we are going to recover and we are going to get through it and have a better system. Because the things that occurred here simply will not be allowed to occur again, and that is what we have to take from this," Reed said.

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