Sunday, June 7, 2009

Residency for Buffalo Public Schools

The residency policy for the Buffalo Public Schools teachers and administrators is of great concern to me. From what I'm told, with the exception of Math and Special Education, all teachers and administrators are supposed to be city residents. The reason those two subjects are exempt is because there is a great need for more teachers in those areas.

A friend of mine used a freedom of information request and found that several of the most recent hirees in the physical education department were suburban residents. This would be surprising if it wasn't for the fact that Dave Thomas, director of physical education in Buffalo, along with his wife, is a resident of East Amherst. His wife is the principal at South Park High School.

We've worked like crazy for 18 years to see our city girls finally become competitive against some of the wealthiest suburban areas in WNY. I know it is tough since there are many obstacles facing the city children. However, the record of the Buffalo Public School teams in sectional games is atrocious. Recently, for example McKinley and Hutch Tech lost in the first round of the baseball tournament by scores close to 11-1. This is unacceptable. Sadly, this is a common result with the only exception being boys basketball. The girls sports teams in the Buffalo Public Schools are not taken seriously by the administration. They are a disaster. Many of you with daughters in our soccer program will find this out firsthand if they end up going to a Buffalo Public School. I'm not knocking the schools themselves as I consider City Honors, Hutch Tech, and Da Vinci to be good schools.With it being 2009, you would think this would change.

It's funny how these people are so dedicated to city children, yet they don't want to live next door to them. I've lived in the city for 37 years, coached city athletes for 18 years, and couldn't even get an interview in Buffalo with a master's degree. Fortunately, I went out and found something else on my own. The only way a Buffalo resident can get looked at in the Buffalo Schools system is if they are part of one of the "entitled" families. That's ok, though. This issue of residency is being closely monitered and there will be an update in the near future. Dave Thomas ,you are welcome to come back and live amongst us.

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