EPISD’s removal of principals, administrators prompted by grade-changing: Union President

El Paso News

Déjà vu.

That is how some people are describing administrative recent changes at some campuses in the El Paso Independent School District.

Administrators, including three school principals, were either placed on leave or reassigned just before Spring Break amid allegations of records tampering, according to the president of the El Paso American Federation of Teachers. 

He alleges that teachers and administrators changed attendance records and grades in several schools

EPISD provided this list of employees who have either been placed on administrative leave or reassigned: 

The following principals have been reassigned to other positions:

Fred Rojas, Jefferson/Silva high schools.
Darren Cole, Terrace Hills middle

The following administrators are on administrative leave:
Randall Woods, Burges High principal
Michael Paulino, Burges asst. principal

The following campus employees have been reassigned to other non-campus positions:
Susan Elias, Burges counselor
Gary Grammar, Burges teacher/coach

The majority of the names come from Burges High School, including the school’s principal and assistant principal. The other names include the principal from Jefferson/Silva High School and Terrace Hills Middle School. EPISD tells KTSM 9 News the changes took effect March 15, the Friday before Spring Break.  

Some of the reassignments are unrelated but are tied to allegations of changing grades and attendance, according to Ross Moore, president of the El Paso American Federation of Teachers. He tells KTSM 9 News it’s similar to the cheating scandal the district experienced years ago.

“It feels like déjà vu all over again attendance and running up attendance numbers by marking them present and ordering teachers to do that does go back to the Garcia era,” Moore said.

Lorenzo Garcia was the superintendent during the EPISD cheating scandal years ago. He served several years in prison for his role in the scheme. 

Moore told KTSM the federation was made aware of these issues back in November, and some teachers were allegedly asked to change up to three months of attendance.

An EPISD spokeswoman said the district cannot provide further details about the moves because they are personnel matters.

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