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Former El Paso schools superintendent faces 3.5 years in prison for test cheating scandal

A former El Paso School District superintendent is scheduled for sentencing at a federal court for his participation in a scheme to fraudulently improve high-stakes testing scores by getting rid of students who would likely fail those tests.

Lorenzo Garcia pleaded guilty in June to two counts of fraud and faces up to 3½ years in prison at sentencing Friday. Garcia admitted to devising a scheme to keep low performing students from taking the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills test. Some of the students would be held back in the ninth grade while others would be told to drop out so they would not be among the 10th graders tested. Six other co-conspirators helped Garcia. The investigation continues.

The Texas education agency has placed the district on probation.