Texas Superintendent Takes Leave Amid Atlanta Test Scandal

ATLANTA (AP) - A newly named Texas school district superintendent will take a paid leave of absence as trustees re-examine her previous post in Atlanta, where officials are investigating allegations of widespread cheating on standardized tests.

Trustees of the DeSoto Independent School District held a lengthy closed-door meeting Monday night before Superintendent Kathy Augustine read a statement announcing she was taking the leave of absence through a mutual agreement with the board. The district has some 9,000 students in the Dallas area.

Georgia investigators say 178 educators had cheated on standardized tests used to meet federal benchmarks. Augustine denied having any knowledge of test cheating as Atlanta's deputy superintendent but said Monday the district could have put tighter controls on test security.

DeSoto schools hired Augustine in April to the $188,000-a-year job.