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Waco ISD to Conduct Investigation of University High

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JILL AMENT
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The Waco Independent School District board of trustees has retained an Austin-based law firm to conduct an independent investigation into University High School for allegations of academic misconduct.

In a 5-to-1 vote the board moved to look into accusations administrators brought to the board’s attention during a workshop June 16th.

The investigation will look at testing retesting procedures, graduation plans and the awarding of credits. Pat Atkins is the president of the board. He says the move is a precautionary one.          

“You know the findings may very well be that everything was done appropriately, or it may be that the board needs to provide additional clarification through policy revisions or changes to internal procedures with respect to credits, or I suppose it’s possible that something inappropriate took place that needs to be reported or there may be personnel ramifications," Atkins said.

In connection to the investigation, three University High employees have been placed on paid leave. Atkins said due to the nature of the allegations, the board wants to ensure the investigation is thorough, fair and impartial for all the parties involved.

The district hopes to have the investigation completed by the start of the 2016 school year.

According to a press release, Atkins expects the review to begin immediately, and says the Trustees will not "dictate the scope of the review."

Officials with the Texas Education Agency say it’s too early to determine what kind of punishment if any may be issued since each case varies and the investigation has just begun. The allegations were reported to the TEA as they were made known.