Beverly Hall (Flickr:Metro_Atlanta_Chamber)
ATLANTA - A lawyer for Dr. Beverly Hall is defending big bonuses she received as Atlanta Public School superintendent.
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State prosecutors have charged Hall with theft for taking some of those bonuses.
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Hall and more than thirty former APS educators are racketeering and other criminal charges in connection with the CRCT cheating scandal.
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On Monday, attorney Richard Deane went on the offensive for the second time in as many weeks, proclaiming Hall's innocence. This time, Deane issued a statement related to Hall's bonuses, and even allowed a news photographer to videotape part of a strategy session that involved the former superintendent.
"In order to label Dr. Hall a racketeer, prosecutors say that she single-mindedly schemed to inflate test scores in order to pad her yearly bonuses," Deane said in his statement. "This is false information at best misleading."
During her ten years as superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools, Hall received more than a half million dollars in bonuses.
Prosecutors claim some of it was based on CRCT results she knew were false.
The indictment bases the theft charges on bonuses given during specific time periods. Documents obtained by 11Alive show Hall received nearly $294,381 in bonuses during those times.
In his statement, Deane says the bonuses were based on "25 or more performance objectives established by the Atlanta Board of Education. The vast majority of these benchmarks had nothing to do with the CRCT results."
11Alive asked the Fulton County District Attorney's office for a response, but so far has not received one.
11Alive has obtained documents that reveal bonuses amounts given to others charged in the CRCT scandal.
Former Gideons Elementary School principal Armstead Salters received a $1,000 bonus in 2008. An investigative report claims Salters orchestrated a school wide effort that year to change student answers on the CRCT.
Former Parks Middle School Principal Christopher Waller and three employees pocketed a total of $3,000 each from bonuses in 2007 and 2008.
Investigators claim cheating at Parks went on for five years.