Former Dobbs Elementary School teacher Angela Williamson is suing Atlanta Public Schools for money she believes the district owes her and for not putting her back in a classroom after a tribunal found her innocent of cheating charges.
Williamson was implicated along with nearly 180 other teachers across the district in the 2009 CRCT cheating scandal. She was accused of signaling students who had answered questions incorrectly.
"That never happened, it was just a bunch of false allegations," Williamson said at a press conference in June.
A tribunal agreed with Williamson and found her innocent of those charges in June and recommended to "reinstate the employee in the event the employee has been temporarily relieved from duty in accordance with this part."
But in July, the district's Board of Education had to decide whether or not to approve the tribunal's decision. In its decision, the board stated that "Williamson's employment contract with the Atlanta Independent School System for the 2011-2012 school year shall be reinstated retroactively through June 30, 2012."
The board did not mention whether or not she would be allowed to teach in a classroom again. Williamson's attorney, Gerald Griggs, believes that according to the Fair Dismissal Act, the tribunal's decision is final, and he believes that the tribunal decided to have her return to the classroom.
"It's been three months. We've waited three months for a decision and now we're forcing a decision," Griggs said of the lawsuit, which sues for back pay and also to enforce the tribunal's decision. "Atlanta Public Schools has had plenty of opportunities to do the right thing and place her back on the payroll, pay her back pay and allow her to come into the classroom once school started."
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