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State Report Critical of Buffalo Schools Leadership

3:03 PM, Oct 12, 2012   |    comments
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BUFFALO, NY - The report is out, and the leadership at Buffalo Schools received some harsh criticism in a new report on the district.

Distinguished Educator Dr. Judy Elliott authored a report that says the district administration is out of touch with the schools and makes decisions without any school input.

She recommends moving the decision-making from city hall to the schools themselves.

The report paints a picture of a school system that's also run from the top down, with little or no use of data to determine what decisions are made, and whether those decisions are successful or not.

Here are some of the main points from the report:

  • Overall lack of accountability in service and support to schools.
  • Federal money spent "without input from principals to ensure the resources align with the needs of the students."
  • Schools report that their inquiries and calls for assistance receive little or no response.
  • There is no evidence of coherent support or oversight from the Central Office for Priority Schools.
  • Priority School principals uniformly voice that they are disconnected, unguided, and unsupported due to lack of service and support from the Central Office.
  • Schools report they do not know whom to call or e-mail for support, and when they do, it's reported that there is often no response.
  • Priority School principals report that they receive a disproportionate number of credit deficient, low skill, and behaviorally challenged students for whom they do not receive adequate resources.
  • There is a lack of written direction and communication to principals.
  • There is an overall lack of coherent leadership at the Central Office.
  • There is little evidence of support and supervision of classroom instruction; particularly pertaining to students with disabilities, English learning (problems) and at risk students.
  • Historically and currently, there are no specific targets or expectations for improvement.
  • When it comes to federal money "there is not a formal process to review, plan, coordinate or evaluate the use of these funds to improve student outcome."
  • Chronic absenteeism is pervasive across all schools. There is a need to establish city, county and multi-agency efforts for reducing chronic absenteeism as well as other factors impacting student achievement.

You can read the full report and attachments below:

2 On Your Side's Scott Brown and Claudine will have more with the state report as well as school district and teachers' union reaction coming up on Channel 2 News First at 5:00.

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