HOUSTON Twenty HISD teachers have been removed from the classroom after investigators uncovered possible student testing irregularities at two elementary schools.

Investigators questioned several studentsabout whether their teachers provided answers for the STARR standardized tests.

They had really good scores, said Corina Ortiz, who works with the Houston Federation of Teachers. They outscored tremendously by far the other schools in HISD.

Eleven teachers from Jefferson Elementary School and four teachers at Atherton Elementary School were escorted out of those schools Friday afternoon. Five teachers who taught at Jefferson before moving to other schools have also been taken out of the classroom while the investigation continues.

Rose Montez has two children that attend jefferson.

I was a volunteer last year and i know all our teachers, Montz said. They're very passionate and I totally don't believe that.

HISD said the teachers were assigned to non-classroom duties, but the head of the teachers' union said they were suspended.

Testing helps the district measure the degree to which students are learning, said HISD Superintendent Terry Grier in a written statement. 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.

The teachers will be replaced by other experienced teachers until the investigation is complete.

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