That money could have been used to give struggling children extra academic support. Stacey Johnson, a Parks teacher, told investigators that she had students in her class who had scored proficient on state tests in previous years but were actually reading on the first-grade level. Cheating masked the deficiencies and skewed the diagnosis.Meanwhile, the Atlanta school district superintendent, Beverly L. Hall — indicted yesterday — "earned more than $500,000 in performance bonuses while superintendent." And:
Teachers and principals whose students had high test scores received tenure and thousands of dollars in performance bonuses. Otherwise, as one teacher explained, it was "low score out the door."This is terrible, but it's only an extreme permutation of the deep structural problem that permeates schooling: teachers and administrators have a conflict of interest with the children who are at their mercy.