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New Buffalo school board members take office

WBFO News photo by Mike Desmond

The Buffalo Board of Education held its annual reorganization Monday. Three new school board members were sworn into office and a new board president was elected.

Board member Barbara Seals Nevergold has been elected president. Theresa Harris-Tigg was selected student achievement vice president and Jason McCarthy executive affairs vice president.

Seals Nevergold tells WBFO News the priority is to continue along the lines of where schools Superintendent Pamela Brown has started.

"I think we have positive road map of direction for the district under her leadership.  I'm looking forward, with the board, to work on cohesiveness and coalition building," said Seals Nevergold.  

Longtime critic of the Buffalo School Board Carl Paladino was sworn in as the new South Buffalo Park District member.

Credit WBFO News photo by Mike Desmond
Carl Paladino takes the oath as new Buffalo School Board member

Paladino tells reporters he's still trying to force the retirement or removal of superintendent. The developer said he plans to submit his motion to the board this week. 

"But I will expose everything that I feel is wrong in this board of education," said Paladino.  "We have 45 of 57 schools are failing. We have a 46% graduation rate. It's like, hello? When is everybody going to wake up to this?," said Paladino.

"I don't believe that. I won't except that premise," said Seals Nevergold in response to a reporter saying the city schools are failing.

Seals Nevergold said she would not support Paladino's motion. 

"I am not looking to support Mr. Paladino's motion," said Seals Nevergold. "Mr. Paldino is one of nine board members and board members come to the board with motions all the time and then they need five votes."

Credit WBFO News photo by Mike Desmond
Newly elected Buffalo Board Education President Barbara Nevergold

Paladino said the state Attorney General is looking into Brown's conduct in an agreement with the Buffalo Teachers Federation over teacher evaluations and a side agreement. He said Education Commissioner John King is looking into having Distinguished Educator Judy Elliott evaluate the superintendent. 

Paladino also made claims that Brown was not certified in New York State, but when a reporter told him she was certified, according to online records, Paladino responded by saying "that was an omission on my part."

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.