APS top deputy picked to lead Texas school district

The top deputy to Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent Beverly Hall has been named a lone finalist to lead the suburban DeSoto Independent School District in Texas.

Kathy Augustine, Atlanta's deputy superintendent for instruction, came to the city system in 2000 to help Hall reform the academically troubled school system. She met largely with success, although some of those gains have now been called into question amid ongoing test cheating investigations.

Nevertheless, DeSoto school board President Dee Trimble lauded Augustine's "strategic vision, outstanding knowledge of curriculum and instruction and enthusiasm," according to a statement released by the Texas district. The DeSoto board is expected to officially hire Augustine after a mandatory 21-day waiting period. Her departure would coincide with that of Hall, who has announced she will step down June 30 after a 12-year tenure.