Decision to transfer 5.5 City Honors teaching positions still up in air

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — “We thought that this would be over by now,” said Philip Rumore, Buffalo Teacher’s Federation President.

Any hopes of reaching an agreement regarding the proposed transfer of 5 and a half teaching positions from City Honors High School came up short Thursday morning.

“We feel that the action that was taken was done as a reprisal and is harming our kids, but I guess we’ll see them in court next Wednesday,” said Rumore.

The Buffalo School District is still fighting a temporary restraining order that prevents it from transferring 5 and a half teaching positions. This comes after the district lost a court battle with the teacher’s union regarding non-teaching duties like patrolling the hallways.

Now the district wants to add 16 aides to do the work instead, and cut the 5 and half teaching positions from City Honors in the middle of the school year.

“We’re not going to take resources that are desperately needed at other buildings to pay for the additional cost of keeping both the teachers at City Honors and having to supply the 16 aids at that particular building,” said Nate Kuzma, Buffalo City School District General Counsel.

“We did not make the decision that they’re going to take the funding to fund teacher aids out of the teachers by transferring them out and making the kids suffer in the long run,” said Rumore.

General Counsel for the district says eliminating teacher duties at City Honors and hiring 16 aides instead creates a budgetary issue.

“This is an issue of equity for the school district. We have needs throughout our school system at every building,” said Kuzma.

The district is expected to submit an answer to a judge by next Wednesday then the teacher’s union has until Friday to respond, and a judge will then render a decision.

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