Grand jury hearing begins in APS cheating scandal - New York News

Grand jury hearing begins in APS cheating scandal

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Prosecutors with the Fulton County District Attorney's Office began a grand jury hearing into the Atlanta school cheating scandal on Wednesday. (Photo: Aungelique Proctor/myfoxatlanta) Prosecutors with the Fulton County District Attorney's Office began a grand jury hearing into the Atlanta school cheating scandal on Wednesday. (Photo: Aungelique Proctor/myfoxatlanta)
ATLANTA -

Prosecutors with the Fulton County District Attorney's Office began a grand jury hearing into the Atlanta school cheating scandal on Wednesday. The grand jury will decide whether charges should be brought against any teachers.

Those cooperating with prosecutors were seen enter the grand jury room at around 9:15 a.m.

Twenty-thee grand jurors began hearing cases involving former Atlanta Public Schools educators accused of having a role in the 2009 standardized test cheating scandal. The grand jury will decide whether criminal charges will be brought against educators identified in the state investigation.

The cheating scandal has been in the headlines for nearly four years. It cost then superintendent Dr. Beverly Hall her job, and 180 educators were identified as being part of the cheating.

Sources tell FOX 5 immunity deals negotiated with state investigators will be honored.

Atlanta Public Schools released a statement on Wednesday afternoon, saying "the Fulton County grand jury process for former Atlanta Public Schools employees who were implicated in the 2009 CRCT cheating scandal began today. This is a legal matter between the individuals implicated and the Fulton County District Attorney's office, and we will allow the legal process to take its course. Our focus is on providing a quality education to all of our students and supporting the 6,000 employees who come to work each day and make sound decisions about educating our students."

The first day of hearings wrapped up around 5 p.m. on Wednesday. The secretive proceedings will continue through Friday. The DA's office has asked FOX 5 not to approach any witnesses who are entering or leaving the hearings.

The state investigation into the Atlanta schools cheating scandal wrapped up almost two years ago. That investigation concluded that cheating went on as early as 2001 and continued through 2009.

According to the state report, 178 teachers and principals were involved in cheating.

Evidence of cheating was found at 44 Atlanta schools.

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