Shopping Cart
Your Cart is Empty
There was an error with PayPalClick here to try again
CelebrateThank you for your business!You should be receiving an order confirmation from Paypal shortly.Exit Shopping Cart

California School Fiscal Services

Providing comprehensive business office and consulting services to K-12 traditional schools and charters



Principal's suicide, forged tests rock promising NYC school

Posted on August 3, 2015 at 5:00 AM
This story literally makes my stomach turn.  I asked myself how someone can get themselves in such a dark place.  I think to myself, "What's the lesson here for all of us?"  I know I sound like a broken record but since ethical issues seem to come up with such frequency in our jobs, I think we all need reminding here.  

Your job is not "you".  It's your job.  It's what you do to pay your bills so that you and your family can have a nice life.  

We all have crazy, busy, demanding times at work.  But those times should be the exception, not the rule.  When you find that you have become a slave to your job, have no free time, no balance, and a family that never sees you, it's time to stop and reflect.  When we get caught up in this fray, our judgment can easily become impaired.  Our entire self-identity becomes dangerously intertwined with our work place.  

Now enters an ethical challenge.  When our entire identity is tied to our job, making the wrong ethical decision can seem like the only option. We become desperate for acceptance and that desperation pushes us to make poor decisions that we might not otherwise make.

Learn from Jeanene Worrell-Breeden's terrible, terrible mistake.  Take a few minutes and ask yourself how an accomplished school principal can end up throwing herself in front of a train because she chose to cheat on her school's standardized assessment!  


First, don't let yourself get run down and tired.  Don't let yourself be a slave to your job.  It's a choice.  If you can't change it, dust off that resume and start looking.  

Second, you know when you are being asked to do something unethical or illegal.  Don't play the "I won't get caught" game.  Don't roll the dice. You are better than that.  You can always find a new job if you must.  But you can never get back your professional reputation once it's tarnished. 

Third,  if you find yourself in difficult ethical situation at work, find someone that you trust to talk it through.  Don't try to suck it up and suffer in silence.  Lean on your family or this network. You are never alone and I promise you that many others have been in a similar situation. Trust in that and let others help you.



Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) - Jeanene Worrell-Breeden had what she called a dream job running a public school linked with Columbia University's Teachers College when she killed herself by jumping in front of a subway car this spring.


Three months later, the city Department of Education says there was more to her sad story: The principal had fudged answers on third-graders' state English exams, and authorities learned of the cheating allegations the same day she made her fatal leap. All the school's third-grade English scores have been thrown out in the first year its students took the important test.


The scandal has stirred sorrow and uncertainty after a promising start for Teachers College Community School and clouded the career of a Wall Street worker-turned-educator who'd earned praise for her approach.


"People are devastated," Sanayi Canton, a second-grade parent and president of a local education panel, said Monday. "It has always been a very open and honest and transparent situation that we've been a part of."


The allegations, which the city Education Department said it substantiated, come amid debate over testing and the national standards known as the Common Core; teachers' unions and some parents say education is too driven by high-pressure tests, while officials say tests are tools to improve schools. Educators have been accused of doctoring scores before; 11 were convicted of criminal charges in a notorious Atlanta case this April.


Meanwhile, Teachers College Community School seemed poised to prosper in its first round of Common Core tests, which factor in teacher and principal evaluations.


Intended to pair a public school with the research and other capacities of a noted teacher-education program, Teachers College Community School boasts $30 million in backing from Columbia, graduate students helping out in classrooms and such extra features as a robotics program. Opened in 2011, the Harlem school is on track to enroll over 200 students in prekindergarten to fourth grade. Plans ultimately call for about 300 students going up to eighth grade.


Worrell-Breeden, 49, came to the $138,000-a-year job from six years as principal at a Bronx elementary school and over two decades in the city school system.


"This is a chance to build the school of my dreams," the former finance worker said in a Teachers College profile at the time.


The school quickly developed a reputation that drew 464 applications for 50 kindergarten spots this year. A 2013 Education Department review praised its supportive environment and "deep sense of trust and respect," while suggesting tougher academic challenges for top students. Parents appreciated the tone of openness that Worrell-Breeden set, including through regular parent breakfasts.


"We don't have one bad thing to say" about the school, said kindergarten parent Kathie Holsenbeck. "And that's why it's so unfortunate that the actions of one person are going to taint it - because it really shouldn't."


Parents were stunned when they heard in April that Worrell-Breeden had died, unsettled again when officials said the English test scores were being invalidated. But it would be months before they learned the whole truth, parents said.


Worrell-Breeden was seen leaping onto a Harlem subway track on April 17, police said. Her death eight days later was ruled a suicide.


The day she jumped, someone told Education Department investigators that Worrell-Breeden had confided she forged answers on multiple third-graders' April 14 exams because the children hadn't finished them, according to a department memo released Monday.


It's unclear whether she knew about the investigation, first reported by the New York Post. The Education Department said Worrell-Breeden died without being questioned, but the agency wouldn't say whether she had been contacted about the allegations.


A working telephone number for her family couldn't immediately be found.


The school referred questions to the Education Department, where spokeswoman Devora Kaye emphasized the importance of test integrity and said the agency was working to help the school. Pupils won't be held back because of the invalid results, officials said.


Teachers College spokesman Jim Gardner said it remains committed to the school.


So do parents such as Holsenbeck and Canton, even if they feel bewildered.


"Why would she do that? . . . It doesn't fit her personality," Canton said. "It's a lot of unanswered questions."


 Reach Jennifer Peltz on Twitter @ jennpeltz.

Categories: Ethics

Post a Comment


Oops, you forgot something.


The words you entered did not match the given text. Please try again.


Reply kyrie 6
10:54 AM on May 25, 2022 
My spouse and i were so ecstatic that Michael could finish up his inquiry with the precious recommendations he came across from your site. It's not at all simplistic to simply be handing out methods that many others could have been trying to sell. Therefore we realize we have got the website owner to be grateful to for this. The entire illustrations you made, the straightforward blog navigation, the friendships you will make it possible to foster - it's most astounding, and it is aiding our son in addition to the family feel that that concept is fun, and that is very vital. Many thanks for everything!
kyrie 6
Reply jordan shoes
11:53 AM on May 24, 2022 
I must show some thanks to the writer just for rescuing me from this particular issue. As a result of browsing throughout the the net and getting views which are not pleasant, I thought my life was gone. Existing minus the answers to the difficulties you have fixed as a result of your short article is a critical case, as well as the ones that could have in a wrong way damaged my entire career if I had not noticed your site. Your personal talents and kindness in maneuvering all the pieces was useful. I don't know what I would have done if I had not encountered such a stuff like this. I'm able to now look ahead to my future. Thanks very much for your professional and effective guide. I won't hesitate to propose your web blog to anyone who desires guidance about this problem.
jordan shoes
Reply kyrie irving shoes
11:52 AM on May 24, 2022 
I have to voice my appreciation for your kindness supporting people who really need help on the topic. Your special dedication to passing the solution throughout appears to be certainly effective and has usually encouraged men and women much like me to attain their ambitions. Your interesting guideline can mean a lot to me and substantially more to my fellow workers. Warm regards; from everyone of us.
kyrie irving shoes
Reply supreme
11:50 AM on May 24, 2022 
I'm just writing to make you be aware of of the amazing discovery my friend's child experienced reading through your blog. She came to understand plenty of details, with the inclusion of what it's like to have an incredible teaching character to get other people really easily master selected multifaceted subject areas. You undoubtedly did more than visitors' expected results. I appreciate you for churning out these important, dependable, educational and in addition unique tips on the topic to Kate.
Reply jordan retro
11:49 AM on May 24, 2022 
I just wanted to compose a comment to say thanks to you for all the amazing information you are showing here. My time-consuming internet lookup has finally been paid with wonderful suggestions to exchange with my contacts. I would suppose that most of us website visitors actually are rather lucky to exist in a useful network with so many outstanding professionals with interesting things. I feel pretty lucky to have discovered your web page and look forward to some more thrilling times reading here. Thank you once again for all the details.
jordan retro
Reply supreme shirt
1:45 PM on May 23, 2022 
Thanks so much for providing individuals with an exceptionally memorable opportunity to read from here. It's always very brilliant and also jam-packed with amusement for me and my office peers to visit the blog no less than 3 times per week to read through the latest stuff you will have. And lastly, I'm just actually astounded with the sensational principles you give. Certain 4 facts on this page are unquestionably the simplest we have ever had.
supreme shirt
Reply off white outlet
1:45 PM on May 23, 2022 
I truly wanted to post a quick message so as to say thanks to you for the wonderful hints you are showing here. My considerable internet lookup has at the end of the day been recognized with wonderful ideas to write about with my contacts. I would express that we readers are rather endowed to be in a very good site with very many brilliant professionals with interesting strategies. I feel truly privileged to have encountered your entire webpages and look forward to tons of more fun times reading here. Thanks once again for all the details.
off white outlet
Reply bape hoodie
1:45 PM on May 23, 2022 
I really wanted to write a note in order to say thanks to you for those fabulous items you are sharing here. My time consuming internet look up has now been rewarded with beneficial ideas to go over with my co-workers. I would point out that we website visitors actually are quite endowed to dwell in a wonderful site with many lovely individuals with good solutions. I feel very much blessed to have discovered the site and look forward to tons of more entertaining moments reading here. Thanks once again for a lot of things.
bape hoodie
Reply curry shoes
1:45 PM on May 23, 2022 
I am also commenting to make you be aware of what a extraordinary encounter my daughter encountered reading the blog. She mastered plenty of details, which include how it is like to possess a very effective teaching mood to let other folks with no trouble gain knowledge of a number of tortuous things. You truly did more than my desires. I appreciate you for presenting those helpful, safe, informative and in addition fun thoughts on your topic to Ethel.
curry shoes
Reply hermes birkin
1:45 PM on May 23, 2022 
I and also my friends have been taking note of the good tips and tricks found on your site and then got a horrible suspicion I never thanked the web blog owner for those secrets. Most of the young boys are actually so very interested to learn all of them and have in effect pretty much been enjoying them. Appreciate your turning out to be indeed helpful as well as for deciding on such magnificent topics most people are really wanting to know about. My very own sincere apologies for not expressing gratitude to sooner.
hermes birkin
Reply supreme hoodie
1:45 PM on May 23, 2022 
My husband and i got absolutely contented that Peter managed to finish up his preliminary research through the entire ideas he obtained through the web site. It's not at all simplistic just to be offering guidelines that many men and women could have been trying to sell. And we also consider we have the writer to thank for that. These illustrations you made, the simple website navigation, the friendships you give support to promote - it's most wonderful, and it is assisting our son in addition to our family know that the concept is exciting, which is certainly especially important. Many thanks for all the pieces!
supreme hoodie
Reply jordan shoes
1:44 PM on May 23, 2022 
I would like to express appreciation to you for bailing me out of this predicament. Right after checking throughout the search engines and obtaining advice which were not productive, I believed my entire life was over. Existing without the answers to the difficulties you have solved by means of your good short post is a critical case, as well as the ones which might have adversely affected my entire career if I hadn't noticed your blog. Your good skills and kindness in taking care of every part was vital. I'm not sure what I would've done if I had not encountered such a stuff like this. I am able to now look forward to my future. Thanks for your time very much for this professional and results-oriented guide. I will not think twice to suggest your web site to any person who will need care about this problem.
jordan shoes
Reply alexander mcqueen outlet
1:44 PM on May 23, 2022 
Thank you a lot for giving everyone remarkably splendid opportunity to check tips from this site. It really is so pleasurable plus stuffed with amusement for me and my office colleagues to visit your web site a minimum of three times per week to see the latest things you have got. Of course, I am also always fascinated with the impressive suggestions served by you. Some 3 points on this page are in truth the most impressive we have all had.
alexander mcqueen outlet
Reply nike sb
1:44 PM on May 23, 2022 
I'm commenting to make you understand what a incredible experience my wife's princess undergone using your blog. She picked up plenty of things, not to mention what it's like to possess an awesome helping character to make other folks without difficulty have an understanding of specified impossible issues. You actually surpassed our own expectations. Thanks for producing those effective, trusted, educational and even easy guidance on this topic to Gloria.
nike sb
Reply hermes belt
1:43 PM on May 23, 2022 
I enjoy you because of each of your efforts on this site. Betty take interest in carrying out investigation and it's easy to see why. Almost all know all concerning the powerful mode you deliver very important tips by means of your website and therefore invigorate contribution from website visitors on the situation so our favorite daughter is truly discovering a lot of things. Take pleasure in the rest of the year. You're doing a fantastic job.
hermes belt
Reply moncler outlet
1:20 PM on May 21, 2022 
Thank you for all your hard work on this blog. Betty enjoys making time for internet research and it is obvious why. My spouse and i know all about the compelling form you present rewarding guidance by means of this blog and even recommend response from some other people about this topic then our own child is being taught a lot of things. Have fun with the rest of the year. You have been doing a good job.
moncler outlet
Reply jordan 12
1:19 PM on May 21, 2022 
Thank you so much for giving everyone an extraordinarily wonderful opportunity to read in detail from this blog. It's always so cool and stuffed with a good time for me and my office mates to search your site a minimum of three times in one week to learn the fresh tips you have. And of course, I'm just actually astounded considering the special solutions you give. Certain two facts in this post are unquestionably the most beneficial I have had.
jordan 12
Reply air jordan
1:17 PM on May 21, 2022 
My spouse and i felt so comfortable when Ervin could complete his inquiry through your ideas he discovered when using the web page. It is now and again perplexing to just possibly be making a gift of methods which usually some others have been trying to sell. We know we now have you to appreciate because of that. Those explanations you have made, the simple web site menu, the relationships you will help promote - it's got many excellent, and it's really facilitating our son in addition to us reckon that this theme is brilliant, which is certainly seriously important. Thanks for everything!
air jordan
Reply jordan shoes
1:16 PM on May 21, 2022 
I and my guys have already been checking out the best hints found on your web blog then immediately I had a horrible suspicion I never expressed respect to the web site owner for those techniques. Most of the people are already consequently happy to see them and now have sincerely been using these things. Appreciation for getting quite kind as well as for making a choice on some exceptional subject areas most people are really wanting to understand about. Our honest regret for not expressing gratitude to sooner.
jordan shoes
Reply supreme shoes
1:09 PM on May 18, 2022 
Thank you for all your valuable hard work on this website. My mom enjoys going through research and it's easy to understand why. Almost all notice all concerning the powerful manner you offer very important guides via the web blog and as well as inspire participation from others about this matter and our own daughter is really learning a lot. Have fun with the remaining portion of the new year. You have been conducting a dazzling job.
supreme shoes