APS trial: former administrator didn’t acknowledge cheating tips

Michael Pitts, one of the defendants in the Atlanta school conspiracy trial, didn’t divulge that he’d been told about possible cheating when he was interviewed as part of an independent review before authorities investigated, according to testimony Tuesday.

In 2010, a panel known as the Blue Ribbon Commission interviewed Atlanta Public School employees about suspicions of test-cheating. KPMG was contracted to conduct interviews, and a senior associate with the firm who interviewed Pitts testified on day 32 of the trial that Pitts did not acknowledge he’d been told by other employees about possible cheating.

Prosecutor Clint Rucker rattled off several names of employees who testified previously that they’d told Pitts about possible cheating. Did Pitts tell you about that when asked if he’d been warned, Rucker asked the KPMG employee, Aneil Sharma.

“No, he did not,” Sharma answered each time.

Sharma’s testimony came after that of former Dunbar Elementary teacher Rose Neal, who’d been on the stand since Monday and testified about cheating there. Barbara Lunsford of the Georgia Department of Education testified later about special funding for schools with high poverty.

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