Buffalo School Board extends charters for Enterprise & Westminister

Jan 23, 2014

Enterprise and Westminister Community charters may have new and extended lives as the Buffalo Board of Education  decided on two-year charter extensions.  WBFO'S Mike Desmond reports the board wouldn't go for three-years and now it's up to Albany.

Both schools have been doing well in state tests for several years and both have had management turmoil.  The school board was told both have stabilized and there are solid signs of academic improvement. 

Outside Enterprise Charter School, Buffalo.
Credit Photo from Enterprise Charter School Website

Last year, the State Board of Regents would only give Enterprise a one-year extension and probably at the March meeting Regents will be asked to approve a two-year extension.

Buffalo Schools Superintendent Pamela Brown said Wednesday evening the two-schools haven't met their own goals.

"If you are look at the full term, both of these schools have been in operation for 10 years. And, there are some differences in how they have performed over that period but particularly over the last two to three years, they have not consistently met the targets they set in the charter," said Brown.

Charter schools are supposed to meet their charter criteria by using their ability to do things like extend the school day and extend the school year.

Both of these schools have done that but haven't achieved performance better than regular public schools.

Credit WBFO News file photo

Westminister Principal Ayinde Rudolph said the school is getting better as test scores have dropped all over.

"Drops of pretty much about the same percentage wise, both within the district and within New York City. So, the drop that we experienced over last year is actually the same. So, part of our job is to make sure that we're providing the best education, that we're meeting the demands of the Common Core and that we're making sure that we're personalizing the education for our students," said Rudolph.

The city school board was told Governor Andrew Cuomo's proposed increases in state aid to schools are so small, it won't make any difference in the district's troubled finances.