DCSS: CRCT probe 'disheartening'

DCSS employees say they are disheartened and frustrated by the flip-flopping from state investigators

Two days ago it was called off; now it's back on.

State officials say they will continue to investigate CRCT tests in Dougherty County for cheating after announcing on Tuesday that the probe was over.

"After reviewing the preliminary results of the investigation in Dougherty County on Wednesday and today, contrary to my initial impression, I do not believe the investigation should be terminated," says former Georgia Attorney General Mike Bowers in a message sent to the Governor's Office Thursday.

Governor Nathan Deal's office says investigators have raised some concerns and still want look at tests for the Dougherty County School System.

For officials in Dougherty County, the flip flopping has them scratching their heads.

"The past 24 hours has been a roller coaster ride of ups and downs emotionally for our school system our teachers and our leadership," said R.D. Harter with the Dougherty County School System. "It's disheartening that the investigation drags on for yet another period of time. We look forward to having this behind us."

School officials still say their confident this process will end well, and in the meantime will continue to cooperate with state investigators, as they have done in the past months.

"We'll be pleased that it will be over and we hope it will be the same results as we heard the other day: There wasn't any criminal intent," says DCSS Board Chairman Rev. James Bush. "Dr. (Susan) Whatley, this was on her watch, who was superintendent, and she said that nothing illegally happened so I have to believe what she said, but upon completion of Mr. Bower's investigation we will know the result."

DCSS Attorney Tommy Coleman says state investigators have told them that they will continue their investigation into CRCT cheating allegations in Dougherty County when school resumes; he says students and teachers will be more readily available for investigators when school is in session.

Coleman says he and the Dougherty County School System hope that when investigators start their probe back up that they expect the investigation to be done properly especially in light of the week's yo-yoing of events.

"Clearly there were lots of people involved in this investigation and this whole matter, and not everybody was consulted apparently. and not all of the facts were on the table when the governor made his statement.," says Coleman.

Coleman says it is not only state investigators who want to know if there was CRCT cheating in Dougherty County; DCSS board members and the superintendent want to know as well. Harter says cheating will not be tolerated in the school system.

"If there are foundings that there were things that were done that should not have been done then there will be consequences," says Bush.

FOX 31's Allen Carter contributed to this story.