Buffalo School board wrestles with admission policy

May 26, 2016

The Buffalo School Board still hasn't decided what to do about major problems in the admissions process for the city's criteria schools, most visibly City Honors.

Wednesday's Buffalo School Board meeting focused on the admissions process for the district's criteria-based schools.
Credit Mike Desmond/wbfo news

It's a long-controversial process which blew up this year because of students who didn't want to take state tests but still wanted criteria admission. It turned into an elaborate, troubled process of working around the absence of the test scores and the problem of applicants from schools not giving the state tests.

"There has to be some accountability. If you are a director, if you are a principal, you have to know what's within the law and what's outside of the law," said Board Member Sharon Belton Cottman.

"It's unacceptable to be doing practices that we can ultimately end up being sued on."

Schools Superintendent Kriner Cash believes the tests  are culturally biased.  Cash plans to have recommendations in place by June 30. However, some members weren't as concerned about this particular issue.

"Our work has to be carefully directed at what is broke. If it's not broke, fixing it, refixing it is senseless," said Board Member Carl Paladino.

"We have so many things that are broke, we should be focused on what is broke."