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Death of key witness could jeopardize DeKalb school corruption trial

Death of key witness could jeopardize DeKalb school corruption trial

DEKALB COUNTY, GA - A funeral at a Lilburn church marked the passing of Cointa Moody on Tuesday.

According to the medical examiner, the former school system employee died of natural causes.

Now there's a question about whether her death could jeopardize one of DeKalb County's biggest open corruption cases.

"I remember when I was a prosecutor, unfortunately there were cases that had to be dismissed because the state's key witness was no longer available to provide testimony in the trial," former DeKalb County District Attorney J. Tom Morgan told 11 Alive News.

Morgan now represents architect Tony Pope, who was indicted along with three others on bribery and corruption charges in 2010.

Those others included Pope's ex-wife and former DeKalb County School Chief Operating Officer Pat Reid, former School Superintendent Crawford Lewis and Reid's personal secretary, Cointa Moody.

Atlanta Schools discuss safety

Atlanta Schools discuss safety

ATLANTA -- The issue of school safety has been in the news a lot lately since the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut.

Tuesday and Wednesday Atlanta parents can get information about what's being done to keep their kids safe.

The Atlanta school system is holding forums to talk about safety and security.  Parents are encouraged to attend and give feedback.

Schools routinely update their security procedures.  Just last week Marietta High School in Cobb County held a safety drill to practice what they would do in an emergency.

It was not a reaction to the Connecticut shooting, but it's a good reminder of why these procedures are so important.

Here's information about the first two forums in Atlanta:
- Tuesday at Therrell High School at 6p.m.
- Wednesday at Grady High School at 6p.m.

Atlanta school board extends superintendent's contract

Atlanta school board extends superintendent's contract

ATLANTA -- Atlanta Public Schools Interim Superintendent Erroll Davis has an extension on his contract, but it's far from iron-clad.

The APS Board agreed Monday night to keep Davis on for up to 18 months, possibly through December 2014, while the board searches for a permanent superintendent.

"We're really just making sure that as we go out and search for a new superintendent, we have to do that over the next year or two years no matter what and we want to make sure that if we find that candidate, we're really prepared to move that candidate in," said Reuben Daniels, APS Board Chairman.

Davis' current contract expires on June 30, 2013.

Want to know what a day as a school principal is like?

Want to know what a day as a school principal is like?

FULTON COUNTY -- Fulton County has chosen 82 schools to become "Principal for a Day," an annual event, as part of American Education Week, from November 12-16.

According to Fulton County Schools, community leaders around the area have a fun way of knowing what a school principal takes on from day to day. As they play the role of a school administrator, the leaders will get to carry out administrative duties, while learning the demands and rewards of being an educator in charge of a school.

Some of the activities set up for the "Principals" include staff meetings, parent conferences, classroom observations, lunchroom monitoring and carpool duty.

"Fulton's real-life principals will hand over the keys to the school not only to share their school's success and challenges, but also to solidify future partnerships that strengthen the education experience for all," said a spokesperson for Fulton County Schools.

SACS restores accreditation to Atlanta Public Schools

SACS restores accreditation to Atlanta Public Schools

ATLANTA -- All the high schools in Atlanta Public Schools (APS) are accredited, once again.

AdvancED, the parent company of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), has moved the school system's status from "Accredited in Advisement" to "Accredited."

RELATED | Read AdvancED's letter to Davis

A spokesperson for AdvancED explained the Accredited status means high schools in Atlanta Public Schools are now fully meeting "Standards for Accreditation" as determined by SACS.

In January 2011, SACS placed Atlanta on probation and labeled the district's school board as dysfunctional.

Look for JROTC cadets collecting for the Empty Stocking Fund Nov. 3-4

Look for JROTC cadets collecting for the Empty Stocking Fund Nov. 3-4

More than 2,000 JROTC cadets from 30 metro Atlanta high schools
to participate in historic fundraising effort

On Saturday, November 3rd and Sunday, November 4th, visitors to metro Atlanta Kroger stores are likely to be met by a smiling, uniformed JROTC cadet with an Empty Stocking Fund logo, as more than 2,000 cadets representing 30 metro Atlanta high schools’ JROTC programs will be working outside metro Kroger stores to raise awareness of and contributions for The Empty Stocking Fund, an Atlanta-based, Atlanta-serving non-profit organization that has been providing holiday gifts to Atlanta’s neediest children since 1926. 

Confused over the Charter School Amendment?

Confused over the Charter School Amendment?

ATLANTA -- If you're confused about Amendment One on this year's general election ballot, you're not alone.

Wednesday we asked some early voters in Cobb County what they thought of the wording, which asks:

"Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow state or local approval of public charter schools upon the request of local communities?"

"It was a bit confusing," said voter Brett Atkinson.

Voter Larshaun Williams said she would not have understood it without doing a lot of homework first.

"Definitely," she told 11 Alive, "I would not have known which direction to go."

Even more confusing to some is the wording of the preamble, just before the actual amendment question:

"Provides for improving student achievement and parental involvement through more public charter school options."

There's now a lawsuit claiming that preamble wording is misleading in favor of the amendment.