2012-05-04 / Top Stories

Local Principal Fined By DOE

Cancelled Math Class To Provide Son’s Tutor
By Howard Schwach

Principal Laurie Shapiro in a 2009 Wave file photo. Principal Laurie Shapiro in a 2009 Wave file photo. A longtime Rockaway principal was fined $2,000 on Monday after the city’s special investigator found that she had cancelled a math class in order to free up the teacher to tutor her son, a student at a community college in Nassau County.

According to Department of Education sources, PS/MS 105 Principal Laurie Shapiro told special school investigators that her son, a Nassau Community College student, had initially sought help during the teacher’s free period.

But when the teacher told her he needed “a little more time” for the tutorial — although his fourth-period eighth-grade math class students were arriving — Shapiro reportedly escorted the students to an auditorium where other classes were already watching a movie – “The Karate Kid.”

The other classes were allowed to watch a movie because their teachers were attending a training workshop elsewhere, according to an investigative report concluded in June 2011. DOE officials confirmed that mass preps of classes where the teacher is otherwise assigned for training or testing purposes is a regular practice and that movies are often used during those coverage periods. Shapiro has been a principal in District 27 for more than 14 years and has no other complaints on her record, education sources say.

PS/MS 105 is located on Beach 51 Street.

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