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Education

Inaccurate ratings for some Buffalo school teachers

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WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley
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The Buffalo Public School District says mistakes were made in the teacher evaluation process.  More than 100 city school teachers and principals received ratings of 'effective' or 'highly effective',  but should have been rated 'ineffective'.

Interim Buffalo Schools Superintendent Don Ogilvie told reporters information supplied by the district was inaccurate or mismatched.

"We were against a hard deadline to report that information to the state. It went in. It was incomplete and in some instances, inaccurate," stated Ogilvie. "It's not one of our better moments."

The District is conducting an internal ''self audit' and is working to revise the evaluations,but Buffalo Teachers Federation President Phil Rumore is crying foul. 

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Credit WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley
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Buffalo Teachers Federation President Phil Rumore responds to the mistakes in the teacher evaluations from his BTF office.

Rumore said it 'illegal' for the district to revised the evaluations because teacher improvement plans must be completed within 10-days of the beginning of the school year.

"Under the law, it's too late to have teachers to do teacher improvement plans," said Rumore. "We were told that a lot of the things that were sent to the state where incorrect.  It's a complete mess. No one knows what happened."

This was the first year of the state-mandated teacher evaluations.  Rumore noted the person who was in charge of overseeing the process is no longer in the position. 

"It is only for the data reported from 2013 and 2014," noted Ogilvie.  "One of my greatest fears is people will use this as an excuse for saying 'see this was a bad idea to start with'.  We should not take that perspective.  Evaluations, whether everybody likes the process or not, is part of our future. We just have to get the systems corrected that govern that."