State Education Commissioner Visits WNY

September 12, 2013 Updated Sep 12, 2013 at 2:11 PM EDT

By Rachel Elzufon

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September 12, 2013 Updated Sep 12, 2013 at 2:11 PM EDT

Amherst, NY (WKBW) - State Education Commissioner John King made a stop in Western New York on Thursday morning.

Even though his focus was on suburban schools, he faced questions about Buffalo's failing schools.

"I'm disappointed that there hasn't been more progress in Buffalo, but I'm hopeful," King says.

Those words follow a summer of tense talks with Buffalo district about how to fix the city's 45 failing schools and how to form a transfer plan that would place more than two-thousand students in good standing schools.

"The outcomes are not in a good place right now. I don't think anyone is happy with where achievement is in Buffalo," King says.

The Board of Regents has put forward a legislative proposal that would take authority out of the school board's hands, and give it to an education oversight committee.

King says he is not visiting Buffalo during this trip because he has seen schools in the Queen City plenty of times, including last school year, and wants to see suburban and rural areas.

At Amherst Central High School, King met with faculty and staff about how the district is adjusting to new common core learning standards and teacher evaluations.

He also visited classrooms to see teachers in action.

"We need to adjust some of our instruction strategies, but that's part of the challenge and that's part of the excitement in trying to make sure our students are ready," says Laura Chabe, the Superintendent of Amherst Central School District.

King says Amherst could be used as an example for other schools throughout the state.

"When we see great resources we try to add them to our collection of resources, so I'm here today to try to add to learning across the state," King explains.

After visiting Amherst, King went to Maryvale to look at resources for students with special needs.