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Fallout Continues from Ridgewood Schools Extra Credit Purchase Scandal

Dan Fishbein 10

RIDGEWOOD NJ , just weeks after a nationwide college admissions scandal rocked some of the country , a Ridgewood  mom has stepped forward to claim a local teacher offered extra credit points to students for money.

Colette Tretola, a Ridgewood High School parent, stood up at this week’s Ridgewood Board of Education meeting with the bombshell announcement expressing concern about how extra credit points were handed out by one teacher.

“About six weeks ago extra credit given in one of my children’s classes in exchange for buying a $20 ticket to a fundraiser,” Tretola alleged. “The teacher sent a fundraising announcement to the class and encouraged her students to buy a ticket to an upcoming event for extra credit on their grade.”

At the end of the announcement, it said ‘when you purchase your ticket forward me your receipt so I can give you your extra credit,’” Tretola continued.

“My child had asked the same teacher if they could do work for the class to get extra credit for quarter, but my child was denied the opportunity because the teacher said she didn’t give extra credit that late in the quarter… How is it too late on day to do curriculum work for points but the very next day you can buy them?”

The Ridgeood Board of Education has directed Superintendent Daniel Fishbein to “investigate the incident.” wink wink. 

17 thoughts on “Fallout Continues from Ridgewood Schools Extra Credit Purchase Scandal

  1. Tempest in a teapot….

  2. Would someone please come to the defense of this poor teacher who was not trying to line her own pockets but was simply trying to raise money for a fundraiser. The fact that this disgruntled parent is trying to imply that a simple charitable act to raise school spirit in the class is now categorized as sketchy behavior is beyond ridiculous. If this woman’s child was doing poorly in the classroom, address it directly with the teacher rather than try to disparage her reputation.

  3. This is the selling of plenary indulgences. The teacher demonstrated not greed but poor judgment. The principle that you can’t buy what you haven’t earned in the classroom is an important one. See the front page article of the WSJ today where affluent parents get their kids labeled as learning disabled to gain advantage for SATs and other testing. Thirty percent of students in some of these affluent school districts are “disabled” , sometimes because they are “anxious” about test taking (try studying). I know this 504 designation as it is called has been used in Ridgewood over the years. I wonder how the numbers stack up –how many at RHS are claiming disability status to get extra time on SAT/ACT? This is not the equivalent of a bogus handicapped placard so you can scam a parking spot–this sort of thing further erodes the integrity of our educational system.

  4. The only ‘scandal’ here is the amount of coverage by the news media to something that should never have been brought to the attention of the BOE.

  5. Hey, Joseph, whenever someone says “something should not be brought to the attention of authorities” it means just the opposite, that the issue should be brought to authorities, and firings are in order and policy changes are in order.
    As American Citizens we the people have the right to bring anything to authorities any issue we are concerned about. And we should bring ANYTHING WE WANT to any authority.

    Hey Joe, ever hear of a WHISTLE BLOWER? I bet you hate those, right Joe. I bet you hate consumer advocacy Joe. I bet you hate all investigations that uncover fraud and corruption and hidden abuse and violence. Right Joe

  6. Joseph Ellenbogen – Sir, you need a check up from the neck up. The “selling” of grades is a serious matter that certainly deserves the attention of our BOE.

  7. There’s more…follow the $$, keep digging. Teachers & admins favorite ‘tutors’.

  8. I agree partially with ANONYMOUS. I would call the teacher naive or foolish to have implied there was “extra credit” to be added when pretty obviously there was not any improvement to grades being adjusted in exchange for money. However, also clear is that extra credit in principal cannot have any money attached to it, period. “Nominal” is subjective and money, no matter the amount cannot be applied to any type of grade impact, regardless of how small.

  9. Not sure what the fundraiser is for, but if a teacher wants kids involved, not a biggie. The school runs a ton of fundraisers. One may argue that if you don’t participate, you miss out. Shall we complain about these fundraisers too? Common, guys! The parent asked a legit question, but let’s not blow it out of proportion. Fishbein did the right thing, which is perfectly in line with a response any HR rep would give. Settle down and focus on something more important, like making your significant other happy.

  10. There was no selling of grades!!! I really have no idea why any public school teacher would want to subject themselves to the self righteous, misinformed bullying of the Ridgewood parents.

  11. “There was no selling of grades!!! I really have no idea why any public school teacher would want to subject themselves to the self righteous, misinformed bullying of the Ridgewood parents.”

    They do it for the money.

  12. Ridgewood parents can come up with the craziest reasons to complain. I am surprised the schools acquire any talented teachers with this kind of insanity.

    The bored parents who complain on this blog should find a hobby. Maybe try and deal with the real problem in Ridgewood, the geese!

  13. How did May 22 determine that “there was no selling of grades”? Did they actually check with the students in that class or the teacher him/herself? Many above responses were in the line of “So what?” and stating this was a common practice in the schools. The very fact that students presumably got a break on their grades by merely buying a ticket is horrible. The whole concept is totally wrong but if you are actually doing these kind of things regularly–and as above writers stated “The student accomplished a learning experience for which they should get raises in their grades because they did something educational”–without a sign in and sign out sheet, how can anyone know they were actually there? After reading this column it is easy to see how those who were rich enough could see no wrong in buying their child’s way into college. It started young by “buying grades” in earlier school situations. I do admit that many students have bought their way into many schools by their parents buying a building or making a huge contribution to the school in which entrance is desired. I see no way to stop this but paying someone to “get the student into the school” was obviously set up by someone who wanted to pocket the money rather than having it go directly to the schools. Where our son went to school the Chairman of the board was the head of a huge corporation and had 5 children–4 of whom went to that school but the 5th was turned down as the school felt she would be unable to keep up with the requirements. Where is that honesty today?

  14. Maybe these crazy parents complaining about donating to charity should try and solve actual problems in Ridgewood like the geese.

    Imagine handing out bb guns to everyone. We would solve our geese problem and our dumb parent problem.

  15. “a local teacher offered extra credit points to students for money.” This is a blatantly false statement. A teacher did not offer extra credit for money.

  16. There was no selling of grades? Yes there was! You pay $20, you submit a receipt, and you get points added to your grade. What do you not understand about this? And add to it the key factor that the child in question went to the teacher the day before and was told it was too late to get extra credit.

  17. If there was selling of grades – it SHOULD most definitely be brought to attention

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