Memo To:   All Buffalo Teachers

From:         Philip Rumore, President, BTF

Date:          September 21, 2020



Subject:     Updates

You aren’t now and never do receive the acknowledgement and thanks you deserve and earn.


The stress of:

  • Using programs and procedures that fail and of which you have been inadequately (if at all) trained.
  • Doing your best spending many hours before and after “school” to reach out to your students and their parents.  
  • Having students without proper equipment and internet connections.
  • Dealing with the unrealistic demands of administrators and City Hall.
  • Getting little, if any, support from administrators and City Hall.
  • Not receiving necessary supplies, equipment, etc.
  • and much, much more


Yet, in the interest of your students, you persevere. We all know why -


Because you are teachers.


Please take a moment to allow yourself to reflect on and appreciate all that you do and to allow for the feeling of pride, satisfaction and hope to be felt. You deserve that and much, much more.




Our virtual court hearing is scheduled for Thursday, September 24, 2020 at 2:00 pm. You will hear from us and no doubt hear the results of Judge Sedita’s decision via the media. We have included the many issues you have forwarded to us, as well as a copy of the District’s memo directing principals not to talk to teachers relating to serious safety and health issues in your school/site. It’s nice to know how much the District cares about our and our students’ well-being.


Remember, we are asking for the court to prevent the District from mandating teachers’ attendance at schools/sites until such time as an arbitrator decides on our grievance relating to safe and healthful conditions and also the education of our students.


Once all parties agree that a school/site provides safe and healthful conditions for teachers now and our students in the future, if a teacher wants to utilize their building/site, that’s fine.


However, we will take no chances.




Thank you for finding the time to complete our Safety Assessment. We know you are enduring very stressful and difficult times.


Although the District has directed that principals should not provide you with information relating to the safe and healthful conditions in your school/site, you can continue to report them to us as often as circumstances warrant.




We are working with several teachers to develop procedures in an attempt to protect access to teachers’ lessons/classes.


Stay Tuned.




Although administrators have agreed to be evaluated virtually, we have not. Any such (unlikely) agreement would require a modification of our APPR agreement and a vote of the Executive Committee and Council of Delegates. As always, any such vote would require your input and if necessary, your vote. My recommendation is that if there is such a document, it will be voted on by all members in addition to the Council of Delegates and Executive Committee.




Obviously, we must codify the ability to meet and vote electronically/virtually. Our BTF constitution should be amended to allow for this.


This amendment/addition is being prepared and will be presented to the Executive Committee and Council of Delegates.


We will be working with our State Affiliate, NYSUT, to set up procedures to facilitate such school/BTF meetings.  




The BTF office is open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm except for Friday. On Fridays, our office (Headquarters) closes at 2:30 so that it can be sprayed (sanitized).


Our secretaries are reporting to the office on a rotating basis unless they have been granted an accommodation to work at home to ensure their well-being.


You can always contact the Labor Relations Specialist (LRS) assigned to your school (Click Here)


If you are coming to Headquarters, if possible, please make an appointment or call ahead.


Your temperature will be taken at the door.


Masks and sanitizing wipes are available for you and our staff’s safety.


Please stay well. Take no chances.