President's Report
By: Philip Rumore, President 
September 2019

Welcome back. Hopefully, your summer “layoff” was restful, safe, and productive. This year will be, as are most, filled with challenges. However, we will, as always, change them into successes and accomplishments. With the finest and most dedicated teachers anywhere, how can we not prevail?



As you can see from the emails to you, this has, as usual, been a busy summer – legal action to get the District to begin negotiations, court, arbitrations attempting to correct the transfer mess, etc.

As you can see from our latest email to you ( –News/Alerts), the District has as of this writing, refused to agree to meet for negotiations. We have filed both a Declaration of Impasse and an Improper Practice charge against the District. Obviously, our tentative meeting to ratify a contract at Kleinhans will not be scheduled.

As for the raises for the administrative staff recommended by the Superintendent and passed by the Board, our position is clear -- those salaries, cost-of-living increase reflective of other school districts certainly, means that the Buffalo teachers, who are on the front lines will receive more.



The current BTF contract is on our website, It is searchable! There is also a Q&A section.



APPR reminders -  

Announced Observation: … The announced observation may not occur during the month of September, the last three weeks of June, or the day before or after a holiday.


Unannounced Observation: The teacher must be notified of the month that their unannounced observation will take place.


The unannounced observation may not occur during the month of September, the last three weeks of June or the day before or after a holiday.


The teacher has a one-time option not to have the observation not (sic) count.


The administrator must be notified as soon as they enter the classroom that the teacher is exercising this right.


The administrator may return no sooner than five days and no later than 30 days after the teacher exercises this right." The APPR document is on the BTF website (click here).



The teacher set-up day, September 5th is to be “duty free for teachers to set-up their classrooms”. Duty free is just that, duty free. “Voluntary” meetings of any sort violate the intent of this section. This is to be your day to set up your room.



We still do not have everyone’s personal e-mail address.


Once again, here are the procedures. Go to - in the blue menu block on any page, click Misc. Then click on Update Form. Enter your District ID and the last four digits of your social security number for confirmation. Then enter any new phone number, address and the personal e-mail address that you would like used for quick contacts. Click the submit button and we’ll take it from there. If this still doesn’t work, fax the information to us at 881-6678.



Re-employed temporary teachers should call the Board’s Benefits Office at 816-3754 or 816-3755 to confirm that the Board is providing your healthcare coverage. Newly employed temporary teachers must file an application with the District to receive health insurance. As always, when in doubt, call the BTF.


If there are openings in your school being filled with substitutes instead of regular teachers, i.e. there is no teacher assigned to the position or no “replacement” (temporary) teacher assigned when the “regular” teacher is not expected to return until at least the second semester of the school year, please call us at BTF. (Regular and “replacement” (temporary) teachers are members of the BTF bargaining unit and receive all contractual pay and benefits.)



If there has been a change in your marital status, it may be necessary to change your life insurance beneficiary, NYSTRS beneficiary, SBF benefit cards, health insurance coverage.


Check your check! Is your address correct? If not, you should notify the Administration (Human Resources/Personnel Office, Room 720 and Payroll Office, Room 814, City Hall), in writing. You should also notify the BTF.



Completion of course work which leads to a pay differential should be reported immediately. Obtain an Advanced Credit Differential application from your office or from the BPS website. (Refer to page 55 of your contract.) Differentials are granted for the semester following completion of the 10-hour block, provided forms are filed within thirty (30) days after school starts or completion of the course work. Just sending a transcript often isn’t enough to receive credit. Examine your check.



The BTF will continue monitoring incidents in the schools. The forms, developed by the BTF, are available from your Delegate. Please use them. Report serious acts of violence, vandalism, etc. We will be making sure that appropriate action is taken. Forms should be returned to Rebecca Pordum at BTF.



Your Delegate Chairperson also has copies of our “BTF Inappropriate/Inadequate Discipline Report Form” to report incidents of what you consider inappropriate/inadequate discipline resulting from a student(s) with weapons, involved in acts of violence, or engaging in sexual harassment, etc, including students being returned to the same school/class after committing acts of violence against anyone (including other students). Forms should be returned to your Labor Relations Specialist (LRS).



Teachers injured on the job should file an accident report form and the Worker’s Compensation form (C-2) and see a doctor even if the injury does not result in immediate lost time from work.



Postings to Facebook pages and other social networks are not as private as one might believe. In fact, you should not consider them private at all. Nothing should be put on them that you would not want your current or future employer to see.


Text messages can be saved, shared and potentially used against you.


Also, the Board computers and your Board email address should be used judiciously. Your employer has access to all of this information. For BTF correspondence use your personal email address.



As per Article XXVI (2) A (8) p 71, contract and probationary teachers who are excessed and subsequently rehired are entitled to be reimbursed for healthcare expenses during the period of their layoff. Call BTF for information on how to apply.



Teachers are advised to check their first pay check and make sure that sick days have been properly credited. Unused sick days should roll over, unused personal days are converted to sick days and new sick/personal days should be credited. If you are a member of the Sick Leave Bank, those days should have been deducted from your accumulation.



As part of our continuing “From the Classroom to the Living Room” initiative, we will be distributing a pad of “Buffalo’s Best” awards for each teacher to use for students.


The “Buffalo’s Best” awards will provide you with a quick effective way to say to a student and parent, “Good job”.


The forms were designed by BTF and printed by NYSUT, our state affiliate. When you run out, call BTF…we have extras.