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Press Release
For Immediate Release
August 8, 2017

DISTRICT FOUND GUILTY OF VIOLATING NYS LAW PROPOSED SCHEDULE CHANGES BLOCKED AT THREE SCHOOLS


 New York State Justice Tracy Bannister has found that the Buffalo School Superintendent violated NYS law when he attempted to use Receivership powers to unilaterally change the starting and ending times at three (3) schools.

NYS Law provides Superintendents (School Districts) with the authority to make unilateral changes in what are called Receivership Schools as long as the changes are being made to improve the education of the students. Receivership schools are schools that have been deemed by NYS to be low-performing schools.

The BTF argued that:

  • The changes to the schedules were done to save money over the wishes of many parents and teachers and not to improve the education of the students.
  • The Receivership powers granted to the Superintendent (District) were granted based on the previous BTF contract and therefore they are no longer in effect since the BTF and District have entered into a new contract.

After submission of evidence and arguments from the Disrtict and BTF, Justice Bannister concurred and ordered that the actions are "stayed until such time as the New york State Comissioner of Education shall determine upon adminsitartive applications by either party herein whether the schedule changes attempted by the Respondents as set forth in the Petition are for the purpose of increasing student achievement at the particular schools such as to be appropriate for a receivership agreement modifying the 2016-2018 collective bargaining agreement between the parties as required by Education Law, Section 211-f; and it is further  ORDERED, that, pursuate to CPLR Section 7805. Respondents, their employees, agents and assigns are stayed and enjoined from implementing the changes in the starting times or the affected schools set forth in Petition Exhibit F until such time as there is the aforesaid administrative determination of the New York State Commissioner of Education." (Underlining done by BTF)

BTF President, Phil Rumore, stated "For about two months, we worked with the District to modify the schedules at several schools so that the District could save money this year. lndeed we agreed to allow schedule changes to save money in the third year of the contract (2018-19 school year). lnstead of continuing to work with us, the Superintendent and District decided to shove the schedule changes down the throats of the parents, teachers and students. Parents and teachers were angered by this unilateral move and showed their displeasure on signed petitions delivered to the court.  

 

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