Memo To:   All Buffalo Teachers

From:         Philip Rumore, President, BTF

Date:          April 28, 2021


Subject:     Negotiations Updates

As per our last email, we met with the Public Employment Relations Board appointed mediator and three members of the District’s negotiating team on Monday, April 26, 2021.


We discussed where we left off, how to proceed (with or without the mediator present… we suggested he be present).


We decided that since some larger venues are available, we will attempt to meet in person, e.g. Waterfront Auditorium, the meeting space at the new Emerson, etc.


The mediator will now contact us with dates that he is available. The availability of the sites will then be checked.


We have sent correspondence to the mediator and District checking to ensure that we all have the most up-to-date documents.


We will keep you updated as we proceed.


In response to some teachers whose Delegates could not attend our last Council of Delegates meeting, where we briefed the Delegates on some of the District’s and our proposals, here are some of the District’s proposals.


District’s Proposals

  • Teachers pay 20% towards their healthcare (current premiums - $9,720 – Single, $21,491 – Family)
  • Teaching periods from 5 periods to 6 periods
  • School year from forty-two (42) weeks to forty-four (44) weeks
  • No retiree healthcare
  • Personal days from five (5) to three (3) days
  • Remove Art, Music and PE for PreK-6
  • Faculty meetings from ten (10) meetings to twenty (20) meetings
  • Eliminate waiver pool for teachers who have other coverage (teachers paid (underpaid) for opting out)


Oh, and their salary offer – 1.5% over the current salary.


The District apparently believes they can bully us and that we will appease them. Work with the mediator, yes. Bend to their demands and drop our Improper Practice (I.P.) charges against them for bargaining in bad faith… not now, not ever.


Cooperate, yes, capitulate never.


Some of the BTF’s over 80 proposals, in addition to seeking lower class sizes/class loads for all teachers are:

  • Weighting students for class sizes based on years behind, ELL, Special Ed, etc.
  • All teachers 45-minute prep
  • Increased supply funding
  • Teacher decides on lesson plans, APPR protections
  • School safety


Some retroactive salary proposals:

  • That BS starting step be the average of BIG 5, plus Albany, minus Buffalo. This is much greater than the surrounding Districts
  • Continue to decrease steps to maximum
  • Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA)
  • Grad Credit, BS +90, MS+90
  • Additional money to pay for increased SBF Benefits
  • No percentage payment for healthcare


These are but a few of the over eighty (80) BTF proposals. A summary of all BTF and District proposals was sent out previously.


We will continue to keep you updated. As you may remember, there may come a time when the mediator has both parties cease disclosure of negotiations. Until then, we will continue to update you.


Remember, we expect a contract not just comparable to surrounding districts, but superior to them.


Our continued solidarity and strength will ensure this.