Family who lost ESE student in school drowning settles with school district

District will pay more than $1/2 M

TAMPA - Jenny Caballero's family did something amazing through an interpreter.

"Obviously, this tragedy has impacted and changed many lives. We are aware that no one meant for this to happen," said Ana Vasquez speaking for the family.

Her mom, dad and two sisters didn't blame anyone for their daughter's drowning though many would have.

"First and foremost we want to forgive everyone who was involved in the loss of our beloved daughter," read Vasquez.

Instead jenny's family chose to pardon Hillsborough county school staffers who let their 11-year old special needs student  wander away from her gym class and drown at Rodgers Middle last October.

Three were fired and others resigned. Her family settled instead of sued.

"The money goes to the family which will help them build a new home and give them security for the rest of their lives," said attorney Steven Diaco.

The district will pay upfront a $200 thousand dollar lump sum payments according to attorney Stephen Diaco. A $300-dollar structured payment will be paid as well over 25 years. The school board approved the settlement but acknowledged money is not enough.

"I know that this may not necessarily be something that will take away the hurt of the family but I'm hoping that in the name of Jenny, that her siblings would be able to do well," said Hillsborough County School Board member Susan Valdes.

Her sisters, 15-year old Elizabeth and 20-year old Lorena may. They are both straight "A" students with medicine and law aspirations but more importantly Jenny's family wants to know this won't happen to another child.

Print this article Back to Top