11 teachers and school administrators help children cheat on testsBy Mason White 11:28 AM April 2, 2015
|Student taking test|
By: Mahesh Sarin
(Scroll down for video) 11 school workers of Georgia, were found guilty of helping students cheat on tests.
The teachers, a principal and other administrators, were found guilty of racketeering for their role in a conspiracy to inflate scores on standardized tests of students.
Only one teacher was acquitted of all charges.
The 11 convicted school educators who were accused of participating in the conspiracy, were driven by the pressure to comply with federal and local test standards so that they receive their bonuses or to keep their jobs in the Atlanta Public Schools district, which has about 50,000 students.
A state investigation found that educators gave answers to students or changed answers on tests after they were handed in.
The evidence of cheating was found in 44 schools with about 180 educators involved. Investigators found that teachers who tried to report the cheating faced retaliation.
A grand jury indicted 35 educators on charges of racketeering, false statements and theft.
Many reached plea agreements with prosecutors, and some testified at trial. Superintendent Beverly Hall never went to trial, arguing that he was too sick to mount a defense. She died of breast cancer last month.
Hall insisted that she was innocent and had no part in the conspiracy.
However, educators said that she was among those pressing them to inflate student grades to meet the federal guidelines related to the extra funding.
The educators who were found guilty of the charges, are being held without bail until sentencing. The racketeering charges carry up to 20 years in prison.
Teacher Shani Robinson was allowed to remain free on bail because she is due to give birth soon.