Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Teacher, Not Administrators, Held Accountable In Drowning

This is emblematic of how Mayor Bloomberg and Chancellor Klein run the system:

Responsibility for the drowning of a Manhattan girl on a school field trip will fall squarely on the teacher who chaperoned - and not any of her supervisors.

Officials confirmed yesterday that both administrators faulted by investigators for the death of sixth-grader Nicole Suriel, 12, will return to Columbia Secondary School in the fall.

Andrew Stillman - who lost his job as the school's assistant principal last month after the investigation found he backed out of chaperoning at the last minute - is being hired back as a teacher at the school, officials said.

"It was a jaw dropper," said former Columbia Secondary School teacher Chance Nalley, who took a job at another Manhattan school this summer. "I was just shocked."

Nothing to be shocked about.

Bloomberg and Klein are ALL about scapegoating, blaming and firing teachers while enabling incompetent and/or abusive administrators to thrive in the system.

Hell, they gave the principal in charge of this school tenure just days AFTER the student drowned, then said they couldn't fire him because he, you know, had tenure.

Here is what the father of the student said at his daughter's funeral:

Tears turned to rage Saturday at the funeral of a 12-year-old girl who drowned during a field trip to the beach.

After grieving the death of Nicole Suriel, dozens filed out of the Church of the Annunciation in Harlem. Most were silent and somber. But one man whose daughter attends Columbia Secondary School lashed out at the school's principal, Jose Maldonado.

"Tell the truth, Maldonado!" David Suker hollered. "Nicole needs justice."


"You are the only one responsible in this tragedy," Suker continued. "I want to know where the permission slips are, and I want to know why parents weren't told children would be swimming."

Maldonado left quickly after the service and declined to answer questions. "I'm not going to make any comment," the principal said. "Obviously we're dealing with the family's suffering and our own."

Nicole's father told the Daily News that her parents never signed a permission slip.

City Schools Chancellor Joel Klein also attended the service, but wouldn't talk about the ill-fated trip. "I'm just here for the funeral," Klein said.

Long Beach police have launched a criminal probe to determine whether child endangerment laws were broken. Only three chaperones accompanied the students on the trip.

Klein refuses to comment, the principal falls back on how he himself is "suffering" and doesn't want to talk about it, and the assistant principal in charge of the fired teacher lost his AP position but is back at the school teaching (and probably will be rehired as an AP a few years from now when this tragedy is "forgotten.")

Meanwhile a 12-year is dead.

Well, at least a teacher got fired in the bargain.

That ought to make President Obama, Bill Gates, Michelle Rhee, and Mayor Bloomberg happy.

And isn't that what we're all here for in NYC?

Helping administrators and people in charge avoid responsibility and accountability while at the same time scapegoating and firing teachers.


  1. It's sickening. And there's silence from the Union and silence from the editorial boards. Bloomberg and Klein do whatever they want, no matter how corrupt, and they, along with their "coattail politicians" and followers, ought to be ashamed.

  2. Also another principal who had booze at a prom and used per session fraud to pay teachers to attend holiday parties was given a letter for his file as punishment. Why don't you investigate what these two principals have in common for a shocking expose as to why some of the administrators have an additional Condun or Condum to protect them.

  3. And the teacher who was fired did not have a clue re: safety at the beach with the numbers of students present. She was too inexperienced for the job. Our so-called union should bring a lawsuit against her admins for failing to properly 'supervise' her (but you know they won't; she's under the bus). My prayers are with Nicole's family and the young people who will have to live with the results of clueless people charged with and abdicating responsibility for our children.