Sigh. Thurmond promotes scandalous Ralph Simpson of “Bookgate”. We have hit the wall.

Ty Tagami is reporting Principal Ralph Simpson’s promotion to Regional Superintendent this week despite his ‘colorful’ tenure at DeKalb Schools.

Promotion leads to shuffle of regional superintendents

If this isn’t an ‘in your face’ power play by Thurmond, then what is? The whole thing reminds us of when Dr. Lewis asked all employees district-wide to write a letter of support to James Berry, the principal at Atherton Elementary who masterminded a cheating scandal there.

Here we have that same blind level of support by Thurmond to another insider adult administrator with no value system.

History

  • Simpson scored a 480 out of 1600 on the SAT in high school and started his career as a correctional officer. He later received a master’s from West Georgia and a doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of Sarasota.
  • Simpson has been with DeKalb Schools since 1991. Below are the last 6 years compared to an award winning principal that recently left DeKalb.

Ralph-Simpson-Dekalb-Stats

  • In 2007 Simpson wrote an autobiography and sold $12,560 worth directly to the schools he worked for, reported Tim Eberly in the AJC. 605 of those copies of “the 70-page paperback, printed in large font generally reserved for children’s books” were sold to a high school where he was recently a principal. [Note: we have never seen proof that over 600 books were actually printed and delivered or that the money was really repaid after Simpson was told to do so by Lewis, due to community outrage.]
  • From 2009 to 2010, Simpson’s job title was labeled “Miscellaneous Activities”. Apparently these “miscellaneous activities” were valuable to the district because he earned over $120,000 annually preforming them.
  • Upon the AJC discovering the misuse of funds, the administration demoted Simpson to Assistant Principal where he still made $23,000 more than a principal who won state level awards for his performance.
  • Ralph Simpson was most recently the principal at Towers high school where 5% of the students recently passed Coordinate Algebra and 23% passed Math II. Towers reported a 100 point decrease in their 2014 Composite SAT scores and a FY2013 graduation rate of 44%.

Spokesman Quinn Hudson said Simpson turned his career around, rising to become principal at Towers High. Simpson improved test scores there, Quinn said, adding that when the graduation rate for last year is tallied for the school, the district expects about a 16 percentage point increase.

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DSW comment: That huge increase in graduation rate sounds very suspicious. Quinn Hudson also makes an awful lot of money to blindly shill for Thurmond (he must enjoy this, as he formerly served as Thurmond’s campaign advisor in his losing run for U.S. Senate). We predict these two will ride off into the sunset together when Thurmond finally leaves DeKalb in order to run for another political office. We hope that will be sooner rather than later.

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47 Responses to Sigh. Thurmond promotes scandalous Ralph Simpson of “Bookgate”. We have hit the wall.

  1. dsw2contributor says:

    My understanding is that Mr. Simpson received a $1,000 check for being Principal of the Year.

    The check was given to him during “The 2nd Annual Academy of Educational Excellence Awards”, held September 27, 2014 at the Stone Mountain Evergreen Conference Center. DCSD’s tv cameras filmed the ceremony, so hopefully Stan can make sure that footage is placed online.

  2. Ralph Simpson was most recently the principal at Towers high school where 5% of the students recently passed Coordinate Algebra and 23% passed Math II. Towers reported a 100 point decrease in their 2014 Composite SAT scores and a FY2013 graduation rate of 44%.

    I’m all for holding principals accountable for the work done in their buildings and by all other accounts you provided, Mr. Simpson seems to be doing a horrible job. Let those facts stand on their own. Citing test scores weakens your argument by only highlighting that he’s working in a school that scores bad on tests.

    Generally speaking, I caution against using test scores to judge anyone’s success. As a teacher, I lobby hard to NOT be judged by my test scores — if test scores were a fair measure of my skill, you’d think that I became about 1000% better overnight upon moving from DeKalb Co Schools to an independent Buckhead school.

    If you insist on judging the man on his test scores, I’d need to know how they’ve changed since he’s been in charge.

  3. The increase in graduation rates was cited as the reason for promoting Simpson. We are citing other relevant test scores to show that this meteoric rise in graduation rates is incongruent. How could these students have graduated high school with such a shallow understanding of subject matter according to these recent scores? We are seriously wondering. Did they perhaps send a bunch of students to an alternative school? We aren’t just taking this rise in the graduation rate at face value – we would like to dig deeper.

  4. teachermom says:

    I cannot believe that this was the best option to fill this position. Seriously, are we really to believe that a principal who acted unethically and unprofessionally is the best candidate? This should have been handled at the time it occurred. Was this ever reported to the Professional Standards Commission? It seems like it could have been grounds for revoking his certificate, assuming he is certified. Regardless of his current “accomplishments” he should never be placed in a leadership position again. Ever. It sends the wrong message to EVERYONE and further erodes confidence in the hopes that this mess will ever get cleaned up.

    I know of a teacher who was so bullied in her school by the so-called instructional coach that she resigned. She feels like she will lose her certification because she is leaving without an acceptable excuse. I am not condoning teachers leaving mid school year, however, it is unfair that a principal who sold his own sham book to his own schools is handed a plum and highly paid assignment instead of facing the consequences of his actions while this teacher has to face the loss of her certification.

    Ironically, we were told this week by our principal that the CO is concerned about teacher morale and that we should pass along our concerns. HAHAHA.

  5. thedeal2 says:

    There’s using tiny increases and decreases in test scores to favor or punish teachers and then there are numbers where there is no doubt that the children in that school are being deserted academically. Towers is the latter. Test scores like the ones quoted by DSW for Towers are a canary in the coal mine, regardless of who the teacher is or how you feel about test scores and teachers.

    All of this is disgusting. DeKalb as a county entity is circling the drain and is well on its way to becoming another Detroit. There will be little enclaves of success once city boundaries are agreed upon, and that will be the beginning of the end for DeKalb Schools.

  6. If you all recall, there were two other principals (both women – I think they were sisters or sisters-in-law) – who ‘sold’ their books to their schools as well around the same time. They were both fired I believe.

  7. dsw2contributor says:

    teachermom – “I cannot believe that this was the best option to fill this position.”

    Teachermom, I suspect Simpson probably IS the best choice for Region 5 — many DCS employees refuse to work in Region 5 schools, for perceived safety reasons. DCS also has trouble hiring teachers to work in those schools, which you can see by checking the open jobs listed on PATS.

    Here’s a Champion Newspaper article about his work as Principal at Towers High:
    http://thechampionnewspaper.com/news/local/towers-principal-redefines-the-titan-way/

  8. Amy Parker says:

    Please explain to me how playing musical chairs with the regional superintendents accomplishes anything useful. It merely stirs the pot, introduces a new boss to a new cast of characters, and starts the entire process of learning to work as a team over from scratch.

  9. dekalbschoolwatch said:

    The increase in graduation rates was cited as the reason for promoting Simpson. We are citing other relevant test scores to show that this meteoric rise in graduation rates is incongruent.

    Thank you. Now I understand now how the test scores are relevant: the county is citing them as proof of his qualification to be promoted. FWIW, Towers students did post 24 points improvement on the 9th Grade Literature and 31 points improvement on the Economics EOCTs. The other EOCT scores were mostly small decreases (under 10%).

    Does the county publish school-by-school retention rates for faculty? That’s arguably a better measure of principal effectiveness than test scores.

    So, how do you manage to graduate high school if you’re failing the EOCTs? Oh, that’s easy. It’s the doctrine of we-can’t-fail-them-all.

  10. This is a very high paying, high profile job – it seems to us that DCSS could have enticed superintendents or asst superintendents with a lot more experience managing principals to take the job. We need experienced professionals. In fact, since they got that grant, aren’t they planning to hire more area supers? Go out and dig up some good ones.

    If Simpson is so effective at Towers – then why on earth didn’t they leave him there where he could impact STUDENTS? Now, they are in line to get their 7th new principal in 7 years. These schools need stability. Principals are key and should be the highest ranking/respected/paid people in the system.

  11. momfromhe11 says:

    I, too, am disappointed but not surprised. When he was demoted to AP when the others were fired, it was clear that he was being “stashed” until things cooled down.

    Not on topic, but the Druid Hills Charter Cluster has (sadly) withdrawn its petition. Stan’s Fact Checker has a link to their letter to the School Board and administration, and they have a lot to say:
    http://factchecker.stanjester.com/2014/10/3082/

  12. We just saw this news about Druid Hills! O – M – G ! These guys are telling it like it is!

    We just reposted – click here to read and comment on the subject >>
    https://dekalbschoolwatch.com/2014/10/15/druid-hills-withdraws-charter-cluster-proposal-and-tells-it-like-it-is/

  13. Gail says:

    When I saw this in the newspaper today, I was disgusted. It is unbelievable to me that DeKalb leadership continues to promote and/or “pass the trash”. How will things ever change meaningfully for the better? The poor students of the system. What lessons are we teaching them?

  14. howdy1942 says:

    Dekalb has a history of extremely poor personnel decisions. The schools are where they are because of those consistent poor decisions. We’ve had four superintendents in four years and this current one will be gone by mid-2015.

    Simpson should have been fired – period! He knew what he was doing and he knew that was against policy and, since it involved Federal funds, he knew that it was also possibly against the law. His was a basic violation of integrity. He got caught at this “BookGate”, but I am left to wonder how many other such things he did but did not get caught. Yet, he chose to do it anyway. In virtually every business I know, the decision to terminate him would have been a no-brainer. Good businesses simply don’t want that kind of person around nor should the Dekalb School System. Promoting him sends the wrong signals to those who have work hard in the Dekalb County School System, adhered to its policy requirements, and are also committed to excellence. I don’t know much about the school district where he will preside, but I am certain that it deserves better and I agree with a previous blogger that a better person could have been selected who would have accepted this position.

    Dekalb needs new leadership, especially in the area of personnel and human resources. Until that is changed, Dekalb will continue to be where it is.

  15. dsw2contributor says:

    Sure, it seems like we have hit a big old wall (again), but let’s focus on how to keep going even though we all feel like stopping.

    Motivation, Motivation and Mo Motivation is what we need right now… so lets bring in a Motivation speaker! I’ve been looking and have found the perfect speaker for us — an expert on “Education” and “Inspirational Success” who is also a “Best-Selling Author”:

    http://marketplace.espeakers.com/speaker/profile/18315/Ralph-Simpson

    His Fee Range is $1,500 to $3,000, but that is chump change for DCSD.

  16. concernedmom30329 says:

    Simpson was there for a year — only a year. In no way, shape or form, can he be given credit or held accountable for changes in data points. If it was that easy and quick to turn around a school, there would be no low performing schools.

    He shouldn’t still be working for DCSS let alone getting a promotion.

  17. Just Wondering says:

    “Does the county publish school-by-school retention rates for faculty? That’s arguably a better measure of principal effectiveness than test scores.”
    Dear Ms Golding,
    With all due respect as an educator, I must disagree with you. We are losing staff all over the school system. In one HR report is shows over 800 people left DeKalb. People are leaving for better pay and better opportunity. Because the TSA was stopped in 2009, there are employees that do not have Social Security and do not have DeKalb paying into the TSA.
    In 2006 or 2007, the school system changed the way they did the contributions. You had to work for the school system for three years before they paid into the TSA. Then in 2009, contributions were stopped. The majority of the people that left my school were impacted by that. They had already lost 8 years. We had an exceptionally great teacher who told me: ” I love everything about this school, but I must do the best thing for my family.” He still keeps in touch with the principal and his friends here. But he is making a good deal more money in another system.
    Another teacher left the field of education all together. She also was an exceptional teacher, but she needed to make more money. There were also people who were just tired. They gave up the fight.

    Staff in DeKalb have gone through a great deal. After you look at the BOE HR Reports, you will see that people are leaving in every area.

  18. For clarity — DeKalb DOES pay into TRS (Teachers Retirement System) – it’s the state pension. They are required to contribute by law. Just Wondering is referring to the additional pension plan called TSA (Tax Sheltered Annuity). We like to clarify when these discussions arise as these plans are confusing.

    A History on TSA — back in the early 80s, the school board convinced teachers to drop Social Security and instead, put their Social Security dollars into a pension annuity referred to as the TSA (Tax Sheltered Annuity). The teachers would contribute 6.5% and the school system would contribute 6.5% for a total of 13% — just like Social Security. However – the school system reneged on this promise – WITHOUT giving teachers a two year notice as was required in their board policy and was part of why teachers agreed to this deal so many years ago. Tom Bowen, board chair at the time of the cuts to contributions, said that the board is legally able to simply change their own policy at any time and chose to do so when this cut was made. Every board and chair and superintendent since has upheld this breach. This is why there remains very little trust between teachers and the school board to this day.

    Currently, there is a lawsuit pending that was filed by two employees affected by this cut. They are seeking class-action status against the school district as this cut to teachers annuities will cost teachers a lot of money in retirement since they will not have the contributions or the interest that would have been earned. They will not qualify for Social Security either if they did not work somewhere else long enough to qualify. Even if they did, those SS benefits will be greatly reduced according to the “Windfall Elimination” policy that takes the state’s retirement pension (TRS) into account when calculating SS benefits.

    Read the explanation for the lawsuit on the issue at the Barnes Law Group website >>
    http://www.barneslawgroup.com/Portals/0/DeKalb.mpsj.memo.pdf

    (Note: Teachers would be wise to contribute that 6.5% not being collected for Social Security, to some kind of retirement fund on their own.)

  19. concerned citizen says:

    Simpson’s presence in DeKalb is insulting to everyone; his promotion is beyond belief. About the sisters – one was a principal who bought the books and was under his supervision. They were having a very highly-publicized affair. She was demoted and sent to a very, very poor school as an assistant. She did NOTHING but fume and pout the next year in her new assignment. He also was demoted for one year and sent somewhere. But, amazingly, he resurfaced as principal at Towers and look at him now. Right back to where he started. Someone, and that someone is probably not Thurmond because of the timing, is looking after him. This is a very sick school system. I don’t know what happened to the “other sister.” I don’t think anyone was fired or certificates taken. It’s all just everyday behavior in DeKalb for the upper ranks, F&Fers.

  20. Beverly Fraud says:

    Isn’t this the guy with the book with the forward from Bishop Eddie Sandusky?

  21. For those interested there is a charter school tour coming up in November >>

    Annual Bus Tour Heads to DeKalb County

    Considering a charter for your son or daughter or just want to see what other charters are doing? On Tuesday, November 11, 2014 the Georgia Charter Schools Association (GCSA) invites you to “Get on the Bus” and visit two high-performing Metro Area charter schools in one day:

    The Museum School 
    
    DeKalb Academy of Technology & the Environment  
    

    See first-hand how these two schools are improving student achievement through innovative approaches. Invite a community leader who needs to know more about charter schools to join you!

    There is no charge to attend. Breakfast and lunch will be provided. Participants will depart from the DeKalb Chamber of Commerce, Two Decatur Town Center, 125 Clairmont Avenue #235, Decatur, GA 30030. Sign up here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/DekalbBusTour2014

    +++

    Click on our CALENDAR graphic to link to our page of events. Send your events to us at: dekalbschoolwatch@gmail.com

  22. Read this fluff piece on Ralph Simpson from the Champion >>

    http://thechampionnewspaper.com/news/local/towers-principal-redefines-the-titan-way/

    Once at Towers High, Simpson said he had to quickly “convey a vision and a mission that I’m going to be here for the long haul. This is not going to be a one and done.

    Sigh. So now Towers will move on to their NINTH principal in NINE years… so much for promises for the ‘long haul’…

    +++

    Oh, and this from the link shared earlier >>

    Dr. Simpson’s accomplishments are attributed to determination, diligence, dedication, and tenacity. He has adopted as a personal motto “If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.” He considers himself as “an ordinary person attempting to do extraordinary things.”

    Uh. Huh. Extraordinary bank account deposits – he charges $1500 – $3000 to pose as a motivational speaker.

    http://marketplace.espeakers.com/speaker/profile/18315/Ralph-Simpson

  23. Check out the book here >>
    http://www.amazon.com/From-Remedial-to-Remarkable/dp/0978970233

    But you can’t buy it from Amazon – you have to buy it from ‘third parties’…

    +++

    Watch Richard Belcher’s report >>

    http://www.wsbtv.com/videos/news/dekalb-school-administrators-suspended/vmjQ/

    Carol Thedford was the other principal (also of Miller Grove) who sold books. They were suspended 10 days. Contracts were later renewed. Thedford is the one who spent $9600 to buy 600 books. She even split the invoice so it would go undetected. We didn’t have an internal auditor at the time. Then we got one. For a while. We don’t have one anymore. Even though this was a big concern of SACS.

    So — still — we ask — does anyone have a book or know anyone who got a book?

  24. Maureen at the AJC Get Schooled blog has an informative post on the subject of Simpson >>

    From demotion to promotion: A remarkable turnaround for DeKalb educator

    In naming educator Ralph Simpson the interim superintendent over Region 5 in south DeKalb, DeKalb Schools is putting a lot of faith in someone who betrayed that faith in the past.

    In 2010, DeKalb Schools demoted Simpson from assistant superintendent to assistant principal over a book purchase scandal.

    The demotion grew out of an AJC investigation. In July of 2010, the AJC’s Tim Eberly reported:

    When DeKalb school official Ralph Simpson wrote a book about himself in 2007, he didn’t look far for a ready-made market to sell it. He sold more than $15,260 worth of copies of the book — titled “From Remedial To Remarkable” — to six schools in the school district where he works, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has learned. At least two of the schools were under his direct supervision.

    In the 70-page paperback, printed in large font generally reserved for children’s books, Simpson writes about his evolution from a high school student in remedial classes to an assistant superintendent with a doctorate degree. Now Simpson and at least three other school officials are under investigation by the school district, which also is asking the Georgia Professional Standards Commission to review the matter. The commission has the power to investigate and discipline educators.

    Got to the AJC blog to read the rest >> http://getschooled.blog.ajc.com/2014/10/15/from-demotion-to-promotion-a-remarkable-turnaround-for-dekalb-educator/

  25. @Beverly – the forward is by Bishop Eddie Long – of New Birth Church – Close friend of our board chair, Melvin Johnson, a New Birth leader who negotiated a signed contract for the school district to pay New Birth $10,000 a month to lease space for the charter school “Leadership Prep Academy”. New Birth also owns the former elementary school building that houses Destiny Academy – another small charter. It was purchased from the school district several years ago for somewhere around $200,000. Certainly, it generates a nice rental income for the church as well. Quid pro quo. If you are in with Eddie – you are heavily protected in the south DeKalb power base.

  26. teachermom says:

    I want to know what the Professional Standards Commission had to say about him in 2010? Also, I know it’s petty but I’m looking at the diamonds on his wrist and fingers and all I can think of is my tax dollars…The topper? He was selling these books in 2007–the same year teachers were told that the county could no longer afford to pay into their TSA’s. What a slap in the face his appointment is. If this isn’t an example of corruption rewarded I don’t know what it is. Classic, unchecked and anything goes if you know the right folks—Dekalb.

  27. madteacher says:

    This is one of the most depressing things that has happened in a long time in DeKalb. I feel so sorry for all of the teachers in Region 5. I would be so ashamed to be in that Region. Hopefully none of them will remember back that far as all of the teachers that were around back then have already fled the County! This just shows that it is still the Friends and Family show in DeKalb.

    And, have you ever noticed that there are ALWAYS 2 people that thumbs down. They must be two very high up people in the county office that read these blogs.

  28. howdy1942 says:

    This decision to promote Simpson is just so wrong. This was not a performance. His was a fundamental violation of ethics, if not a violation of law, and no change in performance can overcome a basic violation of ethics. What kind of example or role-model does this set for students? What about for the teacher he will supervise? What kind of precedent does this set for the Dekalb County School System? Don’t we now have to give everyone at least one ethics violation before separating them? This wasn’t an accidental “lie”, it was deliberate and willful.

    As I cited previously, this would have been a no-brainer at most businesses. Some may have possibly demoted him with the understanding that he had a specified amount of time to find a place outside the Dekalb County School System, but he would have never been promoted as was just done by the Dekalb County School System. Ethics violations are serious and impact the well-being of any organization. And we only know of this single “BookGate” in which Simpson was caught. But when one sees termites in one section of the house, there are likely termites in other sections of the house. In any case, one year is wholly insufficient to conclude that this guy has “turned around”. Sixteen points (if that is true) at Towers High is very inadequate. This guy has “connections” to key administrators.

  29. @Howdy: It is especially deliberate and willful if there really weren’t 600+ books delivered. We have not met anyone who was given a copy. That should be over 600 people. And the school libraries. Anyone seen a book called “From Remedial to Remarkable”? Anyone see 600 of them?

  30. @madteacher – you got three!!!

  31. Beverly Fraud says:

    @dekalbschoolwatch,

    The person in question is named Bishop Eddie Long you say, NOT Bishop Eddie Sandusky?

    Not sure where the name Sandusky came from, or how it got confused with the good Bishop. Apologies.

  32. Sir Quagmire says:

    Can someone clarify the process for Prnucpal of the Year? It is my understanding that principals nominated and then voted for him. Or did a principal nominate him and then the region supts got the final vote? If it is the first scenario, this is the best choice to represent our principals. This is the person that Dekalb Principals should aspire to be like? Give us a break. He is not a role model. Just curious about this vote.

  33. Sir Quagmire says:

    Go to Ga Psc to see his certification. It looks like it was sent to PSC and he got a 10 day suspension.

  34. Reposting a comment made by dsw2contributor on this post >> What’s happening these days at the DeKalb County School District?

    Just a small clarification about your Dr. Ralph Simpson receiving the “Principal of the Year” award: it was not a vote, Dr. Simpson was selected by a palace committee.

    Each of the 5 DCS Regions first selected a “Regional Principal of the Year”. I’ve heard different stories about how this 1st round selection is made — some claim that the Principals voted on their peers, while others say the Regional Superintendents selected their favorites.

    Anyway, the five Regional Principals of the Year are:

    Ms. Melanie Pearch, Woodward ES
    Ms. Brown from Pleasantdale ES
    Dr. Hairston from Stone Mountain ES
    Dr. Tartt from Harris ES
    Dr. Ralph Simpson, Towers HS
    

    For the 2nd round, these five “Regional Principals of the Year” were interviewed by Tekisha Ward-Smith’s committee and that committee selected the winner – Dr. Simpson.

    I’m hearing that all five Principals are doing great things for Dekalb Schools. Dr. Simpson’s work has been highlighted by the Champion and the four elementary schools apparently all have shown dramatic improvements in student achievement.

  35. Yes Bev – They are easy to mix up. [Kindred spirits?] In fact, The Examiner had an article on the subject!!

    14 similarities between the Jerry Sandusky sex scandal and Bishop Eddie Long

    1 – Both the Jerry Sandusky sex scandal and the Bishop Eddie Long sex scandal involve same sex infidelity. Sandusky and Long were both married men who cheated on their wives by having extramarital sex with young boys.

    2 – Both the Jerry Sandusky sex scandal and the Bishop Eddie Long sex scandal involve same sex infidelity. Sandusky and Long were both married men who cheated on their wives by having extramarital sex with young boys. Jerry Sandusky, a prominent football coach, and Bishop Eddie Long, a prominent African-American minister were both charged with multiple counts of sexually molesting young boys.

    3 – Organizational cover ups are involved in both sex abuse scandals. In the Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal, it individuals at Penn State University and The Second Mile charitable organization failed to inform the proper authorities about what was going on.

    4 – Both accused serial predators have children of their own. Jerry Sandusky and his wife Dottie, served as foster parents, and have 6 adopted children, 5 sons and a daughter, all adults. Bishop Eddie Long and his wife, Vanessa, have 4 children of their own.

    5 – Despite accusations from multiple victims, the wives of these two sexual predators believe their husbands are innocent.

    6 – Both Jerry Sandusky and Bishop Eddie Long were highly respected men in their communities, who violated positions of trust. Both men repeatedly used their positions of authority to prey on young boys.

    7 – Both Jerry Sandusky and Bishop Eddie Long established charitable organizations for at-risk or disadvantaged youth, which they used to target, groom and sexually assault young boys. Jerry Sandusky founded a charity called The Second Mile Foundation. Bishop Eddie Long set up the Longfellows Youth Academy in connection with his church [New Birth].

    Read the other 7 here – they get more and more salacious >> http://www.examiner.com/article/14-similarities-between-the-jerry-sandusky-sex-scandal-and-bishop-eddie-long

  36. Kirk Lunde says:

    Regarding the increase in graduation rate –

    Superintendent Thurmond has explained DeKalb County didn’t keep records accurately in the past. The graduation rates in DeKalb were artificially low because the district didn’t track students who moved to a new school when in high school. They were considered dropouts even if they graduated from another DeKalb County school.

    This year DeKalb County is doing the paperwork properly and that should result in large increases in the graduation rate.

    Can’t wait to see Superintendent Thurmond go on about how the hard work of the administration and the Growth-and-Forced-Tutoring-Model led to the improved graduation rate.

    I will give odds he “forgets” about the bookkeeping issue.

  37. Ned says:

    Um, “scandAlous”

  38. Thanks Ned. Hate typos. Appreciate the help.

  39. howdy1942 says:

    One further question: Do we actually pay this guy up to $3000 each to deliver “motivational” speeches to audiences of Dekalb County School System students? In addition to his salary?

  40. @ howdy1942 — You know what to do. Send an Open Records request to DeKalb County Schools. Ask for copies of invoices from Ralph Simpson and ask for copies of checks made out to Ralph Simpson (not his regular paycheck) — all between January 1, 2007 and December 31 2011. If DCS ignores the request or stonewalls or otherwise does not provide this information, send a copy of your request to the IRS and ask them to follow up on whether this income was reported and taxes paid. Here’s more background information: http://trendtotrendmag.com/education/31970-ralph-l-simpson-ed-d and http://www.ajc.com/news/news/local/dekalb-probes-sale-of-books/nQhrn/.

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