The investigation, which stemmed from an anonymous written complaint to the school district in early December, is reported to be looking into whether approximately 20 players – about a third of the team – used fake home addresses so they could play for the Grey Knights last season.
In a Tuesday letter to the community, Superintendent Erroll Davis wrote, “Our mission to foster a culture of ethics continues to be higher than any individual athletic program. APS relies on the integrity of parents, who have an ethical obligation to the district to provide accurate addresses when enrolling students.”
In January, Mays High School P.E. coach and assistant football coach Lee Hannah III was assigned by APS as a temporary replacement for Grady Coach Ronnie Millen Jr., who in December was reassigned to the district’s South Region Office.
Millen, who has been at the Midtown school for 28 years and served as the head football coach since 2001, won his 100th game this past season.
According to the superintendent, students found to have falsified addresses could be transferred to schools closer to their real homes, and parents who signed off on the inaccurate addresses could face criminal charges of perjury.Here is the Davis letter from Tuesday in full:
February 25, 2014
Dear Grady Community:
On December 9, 2013, Atlanta Public Schools (APS) launched an investigation into a complaint alleging address fraud and recruitment of football players at Grady High School. APS started a preliminary investigation into the allegations immediately, and since then, we have taken swift and appropriate action to protect the integrity of the academic and athletic program.
The full investigation is expected to be completed by the first week of March, and the findings will be released to the Grady community during a series of meetings on the campus of Grady High School on March 5. As the district makes a final determination, we will also continue to work collaboratively with the Georgia High School Association (GHSA).
Our mission to foster a culture of ethics continues to be higher than any individual athletic program. APS relies on the integrity of parents, who have an ethical obligation to the district to provide accurate addresses when enrolling students. Providing false information during the registration process is not only a criminal act, but strains the district’s resources, jeopardizes student safety and impedes our communications efforts and transfer process. Reporting behavior that is harmful to Grady students, its credentials, and its stellar reputation is the responsibility of everyone.
Following the investigation, the district will continue to inform all of our employees, students and parents on the district’s policies and regulations related to enrollment and student transfers. Overall, we want to ensure that our students can participate in strong academic and athletic programs, while advocating for ethics and accountability.
Thank you for your understanding and cooperation as we work through this process.
Erroll B. Davis Jr. Superintendent