CRCT Investigation Report: Woodson Elementary School | Schools
Woodson Elementary School
1605 Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway NE
Principal: Dr. Viola Blackshear
Testing Coordinator: Ketchia Smith
SRT-4 Executive Director: Tamara Cotman
ATLANTA -- Nearly two-thirds of Woodson Elementary School's classrooms were flagged for cheating on the 2009 CRCT, according to a state report released Tuesday.
Special investigators first appointed by Gov. Sonny Perdue found "Testing Coordinator (Debra) Dixon instructed teachers to seat students strategically so students could copy one another's work on the CRCT." The report found teachers also used "non-verbal signals to assist students" on the standardized test.
In 26 of the 38 flagged classrooms, the chances of answers being changed without adult intervention were less than one in a million.
Two teachers confessed to cheating, including Ashlyn Strozier. She said when news first broke about the CRCT cheating scandal, Principal Viola Blackshear called a staff meeting and "warned teachers to be careful what they said to people outside of the school."
While Blackshear cooperated with investigators during an initial round of questions, the report said she later refused additional questions and pleaded the Fifth Amendment.
Viola Blackshear remains the principal at Woodson Elementary. Debra Dixon has been named interim principal at Usher/Collier Heights Elementary School, which was also implicated in the cheating scandal. Both women have denied cheating.