AUSTIN -

Half of the 10 people who run Texas Child Protective Services' regional offices have been fired or have retired, an agency spokesman confirmed Tuesday.

George Cannata, who runs the North Texas or Region 3 office in Arlington, will keep the director job he was given last spring.

But five others will be replaced, including one in El Paso who chose to retire, CPS spokesman Patrick Crimmins said.

Crimmins told the Dallas Morning News that Diana Barajas, regional director in El Paso, chose to retire rather than reapply for her job and be re-evaluated.

In June, newly installed CPS chief Henry "Hank" Whitman, the former head of the Texas Rangers, announced a 10-point plan for improving the agency, which has come under intense fire this year for shoddy case work and poor management.

"A key component of Commissioner Whitman's 10-point plan ... is top-to-bottom accountability, and revamping CPS' regional leadership is a critically important and very necessary step," Crimmins told the Morning News, adding a new roster of regional directors would be unveiled soon.