The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Scapegoating Atlanta Teachers

Apr 27, 2015

Eleven Atlanta educators were convicted of “racketeering” for participating in systematic cheating in the city’s schools. All but one were immediately handcuffed and taken to jail. They received harsh sentences, with three receiving seven years in prison, a $25,000 fine, and 2,000 hours of community service.

These sentences don’t fit the crime. Atlanta was not the only school system in which such scandals occurred. Similar ones took place in Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Houston and El Paso, Texas.

They were a product of unrealistic standards set up for scoring on standardized tests used to decide school funding. The rules were handed down by the Bush and Obama administrations. Such harsh demands, which take no account of the impoverishment in some districts compared to others, virtually guaranteed some teachers and administrators would resort to playing the system.

Higher placed white collar criminals, Wall Street bankers, and even some murderers receive lighter treatment. This looks like the old system of Georgia “injustice” raising its ugly head yet again.