BUFFALO, NY - Back in June, the New York State Department of Education said the district broke the law by not letting students transfer out of low-performing schools. On Friday, Buffalo Schools had to submit a plan on how to deal with the problem.
The district says isn't enough space for all the students who want to change schools. Buffalo School Board member James Sampson tells 2 On Your Side that right now the district has 2,219 students who have applied to transfer out of its schools but only about 300 to 500 new seats available in the upcoming year.
Teachers Union President Phil Rumore is not happy with the state mandate in any event.
"Playing musical chairs is not the answer," he says. "What you do is you say what's happening at this school that's low-performing that we can fix for all of the students that are there, because you've done nothing then for the students that remain in the school."
Buffalo's plan has to be approved by the state. Parents will not find out where their child will be placed until much closer to the start of school.
On Friday afternoon, Buffalo Public Schools Superintendent Pamela Brown issued the following statement:
The District has submitted a revision of the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Public School Choice Corrective Action Plan that is the product of close collaboration with the New York State Education Department (NYSED).
The original plan was formulated with consideration of input from District parents and staff. The plan submitted today was revised to reflect NYSED directives based on the original plan, in further consideration of State Education guidelines.
It is our expectation that the Corrective Action Plan meets the State Education Department's Public School Choice guidelines and is in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations as put forth through No Child Left Behind, per Commissioner John B. King.
As always, we strive to offer each student a world-class, 21st century education.