"This is a piece of data that for the first time answers the burning question: Do teacher and administrator absences affect student performance? The answer is yes. And so now it's up to us to do something about it," said Mark W. Frazier, a high-ranking administrator in the district and one of the study's authors. And the more their teacher is absent, the more days students are absent, the study found.
The report , Buffalo Public Schools District Attendance Report 2009-2010, a 23 page study relates teacher and administrator absences to student achievement and student attendance.
Yet, student attendance decreased steadily from 2005 to 2010 during the period the district laid-off its entire attendance faculty in 2005. It would be beneficial to study student attendance and to come up with viable solutions. Many of the absences in the study included teachers and administrators taking legitimate contractual time off the report associating it with a "culture of absenteeism regardless of how the absence occurred.
There are only two attendance teachers serving 34,000 students in the Buffalo Public Schools. One teacher retired in May 2010 and he was not replaced and his duties focused on the special education students composing about 10,000 in the BPS. And negotiations on re-hiring the laid-off attendance teachers appears stalled.
The Buffalo Teachers Federation two years ago requested the laid-off attendance teachers fill out a survey documenting where they have worked since being laid-off because the district negotiating officials asked for the information. After filling out the form neither the district or the BTF have been in contact with the teachers.
There have been several unsuccessful attempts to get Mr. Philip Rumore to meet with the attendance teachers to explain what is happening during the negotiations with the district.
If a high school had an 86% attendance five years ago and it declines to 73%, the exact time period the attendance teacher laid-off in the district, then, why it has taken it so long for district officials and the union to rehire the laid-off attendance teacher?
So instead of looking for the causes of student academic failure---student absenteeism---the district blames administrators, teachers and teachers aides while attendance teacher still laid-off, and high school attendance rates continue to plummet.