HISD investigates possible cheating at elementary schools

HISD says they've found possible student testing irregularities at two elementary schools, and 20 teachers have been reassigned
November 15, 2013 8:22:12 PM PST
Nearly two dozen HISD teachers have been pulled from the classrooms over allegations of cheating.

Parents say they are worried about what this will mean for their children, and they are standing by the teachers.

Carlos Mejia was in tears after teachers who administered tests containing what HISD called "irregularities" were removed from his school. He was not the only one crying.

"It really hurts me just to know that our teachers are being accused," parent Rose Montez said.

HISD pulled 11 teachers from Jefferson Elementary and four from Atherton, reassigning them to non-classroom duties. Five former Jefferson teachers were also removed from their current schools. The district is investigating test results from the 2012-2013 school year.

"Testing helps the district measure the degree to which students are learning," said HISD Superintendent Terry Grier. "When the district receives information that the integrity of the state's testing process might have been compromised, it's important that a thorough investigation is conducted. Throughout this process, our top priority is to ensure that learning is not disrupted for any student."

Parents we found do not believe the teachers did anything wrong.

"No, I don't believe that," grandparent Janet Griggs.

After the investigation, HISD will decide whether the teachers will return or be replaced. That outcome will affect students like Carlos Mejia.

"Do you want your teachers to come back here and teach you again?" we asked him.

"Yeah," he said.

"Would that make you feel better?" we asked.

"Yeah," he said.

We wanted to ask HISD exactly what these teachers are accused of doing, but the district refused to answer any of our questions, citing the ongoing investigation.

In the mean time, experienced district teachers will assume temporary responsibility for the classrooms taught by the reassigned teachers.

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