Sunday, July 31, 2011

"They willingly accepted Hall’s story line of rebirth in an urban school system."

In February 2010, some of Atlanta’s top business leaders realized they had a problem.
State officials, though, were suggesting gains by Atlanta schools resulted from widespread cheating. Suddenly, the deal between Hall and the business community took on Faustian overtones. For a decade, they had aligned themselves with Beverly Hall, the superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools. They willingly accepted Hall’s story line of rebirth in an urban school system. They promoted and sometimes exaggerated Hall’s achievements — for her benefit and for their own...
...Hall’s efforts to engage business leaders succeeded. The education fund and the district collected millions of dollars in grants and donations, most notably $22 million for science education from the General Electric Foundation.GE’s vice chairman, John Rice, who was based in Atlanta, became one of Hall’s closest confidants. Her emails, obtained through the Georgia Open Records Act, show she frequently consulted Rice on matters large and small. He offered advice on managing stress, for instance, urging her to not read critical editorials.
Volunteering as chairman of the education fund, Rice worked with Hall to solicit corporate gifts. In April 2009, for instance, they appeared together at what the education fund billed as a “cultivation event” for potential donors...
Read entire AJC article here.

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