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On Sept. 9, the Atlanta school board met in secret and voted not to extend Superintendent Meria Carstarphen's contract, which expires June 30, 2020.

Carstarphen's ouster divided the city and sparked widespread condemnation of the school board for holding a secret majority vote by a public body. Parents called into local radio shows to express their outrage over Carstarphen's ouster.

Carstarphen's forced departure made national news.

As Superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools, Carstarphen (pictured left) led the district's nearly 52,000 students, 6,000 full-time employees and 87 schools and oversaw the system’s $1 billion annual budget.

Verdaillia Turner, educator and president of 1,700-member Atlanta Federation of Teachers, says the Atlanta school board should be "transparent" in its search for a replacement for Carstarphen.

In a guest column published in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Turner said the school board should listen to the advice of educators rather than business interests that played a key role in selecting Carstarphen.

She accused the APS of entering into long-term contracts with companies and organizations that favor privatization under the banner of charter schools.

And she urged the APS to choose a superintendent who believes in public education.

"Hiring a superintendent is a monumental task and the Atlanta Board of Education should learn from the recent past to avoid pitfalls that could have serious ramifications for the future of the school system," she writes.

"Atlanta Public Schools needs a superintendent who will implement models that have been proven to work, such as the Community Schools approach that emphasizes meeting the whole family’s needs, real family engagement, community partnerships, and wrap-around services.

She added: "In a city such as Atlanta where most students suffer from poverty, this model is especially needed. A recent study identified Atlanta as the city with the least economic mobility for poor children."

Turner also criticized the school board for selecting Carstarphen, a Tulane and Auburn graduate, who has little teaching experience.

"Shouldn't a superintendent have spent time in the classroom interacting with students, parents, and other teachers?" she wrote.

Atlanta public schools are among the lowest performing schools in the nation. The Atlanta school district is still digging out from under the teacher cheating scandal of 2009.

Top teachers and principals in the Atlanta Public Schools were arrested for cheating on state-administered standardized tests. The teachers have since been released from prison.

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Snow and Atlanta roads do not mix. Schools, businesses and government offices shut down at the first hint of snow or sleet in Atlanta and the surrounding suburbs.

Many parents were forced to call out from work to stay home with their children, as the temperature hovered around 15 degrees Fahrenheit on Wednesday morning.

Atlanta's famous The Varsity restaurant announced all locations in Atlanta, Athens, Kennesaw and Norcross are closed today.

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Chris Brown

Chris Brown doesn't have Oprah money, but he still dug deep in his pockets to donate $50,000 to Columbia Middle School in Atlanta. The singer stopped by the school on Saturday to drop off concert tickets for all the children to attend his show later that night at Philips Arena.

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It's a well-known fact that Atlanta schoolchildren rank far below the national average in reading proficiency scores.

According to the AJC.com, the Atlanta Fair is doing its part to promote a passion for reading and improve literacy among black schoolchildren.

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APS cheating scandal

Fulton County Georgia Superior Court Judge Jerry Baxter sentenced 10 of the 11 convicted Atlanta Public Schools educators to serve time in prison and home confinement during an emotionally intense sentencing hearing this morning.

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Atlanta teacher rant caught on video

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The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports the local school district has launched an investigation into a teacher's unhinged meltdown inside a classroom.

WARNING: Video automatically begins playing after the break. Turn your volume down.

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