(Courtesy The Tonight Show with Jay Leno/NBC)
ATLANTA -- The Atlanta Public Schools CRCT cheating scandal has now become a joke on at least one national stage.
"This is a shocking story," Jay Leno said during his "Tonight Show" monologue on Thursday night. "Teachers in Atlanta are accused of altering the students' tests to improve the scores."
"I guess it was pretty hard to catch them," he continued. "For some reason nobody could put 2 and 2 together."
His studio audence erupted in laughter, but the scandal has been no joke in Metro Atlanta and elsewhere across the country. Time magazine called it "likely the largest cheating scandal in U.S. history to date."
U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan called the APS culture "rotten" and tried to distance Atlanta's cheating problem from other testing concerns across the country.
"You want to make sure that you evaluate students each year, but the way to do that is through good teaching," Duncan said. "The vast majority of folks around the country do it the right way."
Amid the levity on Leno Thursday, the late night host highlighted a point everyone has been making: "You know the ones who get hurt by something like this - the kids."
He went on to say, "The kids are the ones that get hurt cause they're never going to learn to cheat on their own."