ATLANTA -- As the Atlanta Public School district prepare for CRCT next week, former Superintendent Beverly Hall is preparing her defense, on accusations she used those tests to profit.

On Wednesday, one of her attorneys, Richard Deane, agreed to sit down and talk with 11Alive. At the heart of his message, Hall is innocent.

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"I think they're excessive and as it relates to Dr. Hall I think they're unfounded," Deane said about the four criminal charges against her.

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"The notion that Dr. Hall is some kind of sinister kingpin as would be a drug lord or a crime boss it couldn't be further from the truth," he added.

Earlier this month, Hall walked into the Fulton county jail, accused of orchestrating what's some call the worst cheating scandal in our country's history.

The indictment alleges a broad conspiracy to cheat, hide cheating or retaliate against whistleblowers in an effort to bolster student test scores. Many received bonuses for improved student performance as a result.

Hall set up the system that rewarded staff for improving CRCT scores. It's a system that helped her earn more than $500,000 in bonuses alone.

"That's over a period over ten years and those bonuses were tied to factors much more than CRCT. Even the CRCT investigation said itself that as to the bonuses teachers received, were so meager that they didn't provide any real impetus for them to engage in any kind of cheating," defended Deane.

Some parents wonder, what kind of leader Hall was, if she didn't even know that such widespread corruption was taking place in the district. The state's investigation implicated 178 teachers and administrators; 35 including Hall now face criminal charges.

"We'll be addressing that very issue in court at the appropriate time," said Deane.

Deane says Hall is eager to defend herself in court. He says he believes she will be cleared of all charges.

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