Despite Teacher Layoffs, Talks of a New Hire Emerging

August 3, 2011 Updated Aug 3, 2011 at 11:22 PM EDT

By Kyla Igoe

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August 3, 2011 Updated Aug 3, 2011 at 11:22 PM EDT

Buffalo, NY (WKBW) - Less than a week after hundreds of teacher and teacher aide jobs were erased from the Buffalo School System, the district maybe hiring. Monday a recommendation was made to potentially create a position to oversee low achieving schools within the district. The draft outlines a 'Board Restart Liaison', a non-union administration position for Superintendent Dr. James Williams' staff. Even though the position is required to be eligible for a state grant, many are outraged over the timing of the potential position after 254 teachers and teacher aides were recently notified they would no longer have a job. The school board president is also worried about the number of administrative positions within the district and is strongly opposed to adding another non-union job to Williams' staff.

"It sends a mixed message, a contradictory message to parents, teachers and administrators," said Buffalo Board of Education President Lou Petrucci. "It begs the question, what is the district's priority?"

Petrucci says discussions are ongoing and the board is also looking into a way to fill the position internally or create a union job where the board would have more control over.

"This has as no direct impact in the classroom. That position is a position that the superintendent can fill himself. He can report based on what's going on with the schools to the board of education," said District Parent Coordinating Council Vice President Samuel Radford III. "We don't need to create a new layer of administration for persistently low achieving schools."

The school board will meet next week to discuss all options on this issue. Buffalo Teachers Federation President Phil Rumore called the potential of a new hire 'unbelievable'. We attempted to reach out to the superintendent for comment, but were told he's attending an administrative retreat this week and referred all comments to the Buffalo Board of Education.