The New Rochelle High School alum tapped to take over as principal at his alma mater won’t be taking the job after all.
Last month, the New Rochelle Board of Education announced that veteran educator Adofo Muhammad had been chosen to serve as principal at the high school, beginning in July.
On Thursday, May 7, however, Muhammad changed his course and announced that he is “rescinding his intentions to become the new principal.”
“It is with great consternation that I must rescind my intentions to become the new principal of New Rochelle High School,” he wrote in an email. “I will forever be indebted to the New Rochelle community for the opportunities that have been afforded to me.
In the email, Muhammad cited “serious family matters,” and a death in the family for his stepping down.
“Unfortunately due to serious family matters which include the death of my grandmother and the compromised health of other loved ones, I will be unable to provide the time and dedication needed to make sure that New Rochelle High School becomes one of the premier high schools in the region,” he said.
Calling it the “opportunity that would be a culmination of my career,” Muhammad said he had “dreamed about walking down the hallways, entering into classes and helping to move the educational and social and emotional vision of New Rochelle to a new plateau.”
Muhammad added, “my family roots in New Rochelle go back to the late 1800s and I wish the community the best as they move forward.”
"Like so many of you, we were also disappointed to learn of Mr. Muhammad's difficult decision to rescind his intention to serve as our next principal at the high school, which was shared earlier this evening," Schools Superintendent Laura Feijoo said in a statement. "Positive energy and momentum was already building, and this is a setback. At the same time, we fully support Mr. Muhammad's decision. If the current COVID-19 crisis has taught us anything, it is that each of us needs to hold dear and take care of those closest to us."
Feijoo said the district is already "hard at work to determine the best options moving forward."
"We recognize that this news undoubtedly raises questions and adds anxieties for a high school community that has already been through so much," she said. "In light of the uncertainties already being thrust upon us all by the coronavirus, our extended team has already been actively engaged in creative scenario planning. We look forward to sharing updates as soon as we are able."
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.