A Brooklyn teacher at the high-school for Innovation in Advertising and Media was caught on surveillance camera faking a tumble down the stairs to get out of a classroom observation by her supervisor, according to a report by the Special Commissioner of Investigation. It seems that teacher Ilene Feldman didn't quite "sell" the tumble, and after reviewing the footage, investigators concluded that she faked it to postpone a performance review that she feared would be negative. Honey, improvisation is no substitute for rehearsal!
The 33-year-old novice teacher/stunt woman is seen on the video pausing on the fifth step on a school's stairwell while rummaging through her handbag. According to a copy of the probe report obtained by the Post, "Feldman, who then appeared to hear someone coming, grabbed her handbag with her right hand, held the railing with her left hand, and slowly fell to the 2nd floor landing... The footage revealed that Feldman actually threw herself down the stairs in a controlled fall." After landing on her back, Feldman is seen reaching for her leg and making "sounds as if she were in extreme pain" as a concerned staffer enters the frame.
Feldman, who speculated that she fell because her foot got stuck on a piece of gum, was taken to a nearby hospital, and filed for four days of injury compensation. (This all happened in December 2008, but the DOE investigator is only now making it public.) After being confronted about her unconvincing spill, Feldman abruptly resigned. The Post has grainy video of her fall, but for a lesson on how the pros do it, here's President Gerald Ford falling down the staircase to Air Force One (none of Chevy Chase's SNL homages are on YouTube, so we'll just have to settle for this). Ms. Feldman, this is how it's done: