The Death of a Principal

I was saddened to read about the principal who committed suicide over a common core testing scandal. My heartfelt condolences go out to her family.

Her death must be a wake up call to every political figure in New York City. The reality is the high stakes testing that is being implemented in New York State is forcing people to corrupt their morals to assure keeping their job. At the same time these high stakes exams are placing undue stress on our students.

Every April, parents throughout New York City tell horror stories about the exams and the effects on their children. From my personal experience, my son would become physical ill before and during these exams. He sleep patterns would suffer and his appetite would basically disappear. Many parents tell similar stories, but no one seems to be listening.

Oddly enough, the Department of Education blamed the principal for the cheating scandal after her death. The reality is high stakes testing and credit recovery  have led to cheating scandals in various schools.

Only recently was a principal fired for cheating. Ms.Worrell-Breeden’s death should be a reason to look over high stakes testing and credit recovery. These practices are destroying our education system. Let’s be honest our students are not learning in elementary school are basically being test prep for an entire year. By the time they get to high school they are woefully unprepared for the next level. Unfortunately, this leads to failing grades and of course principals are told that students must graduate in four years so to assure high graduation rates. To assure these students graduate credit recovery programs are created and using John Dewey High school as a benchmark cheating seems to run rampant in these credit recovery programs. By the time our students get to college many are forced to take remedial classes to “catch up” with their peers. This is a cycle that needs to be broken before we read about more tragic stories like Mrs. Worrell-Breeden.


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