Superintendent’s antics really boggle the mind

Let me get this straight. I could be superintendent of the Buffalo Public Schools, perform miserably, ignore inclusiveness, maintain secrecy in many aspects of running the district, fail to address critical issues and bring matters to the board at the last second so it is unprepared to respond.

I could hire administrators at will, hire people lacking the credentials for the job they are hired to fill and offer them time off from their job and money to pay to obtain those credentials, hire a consultant and pay her more than she earned doing the same thing as an employee, and when that consulting contract is terminated because of her overpriced and poor performance, hire that consultant to be my deputy.

I could use project-specific grants to balance my budget, fail to address remedial issues with the New York State Education Department, alienate stakeholders, fail as a leader, protect seasoned insiders, be a puppet of a supervisor-friendly board majority, isolate my activities from deeper scrutiny, lack vision, lack a plan to deal with the inevitable future budget problems and, in general, fail the community and the students whom I profess to be my number one priority.

Then, guess what? I can quit my job, draft an unchallenged severance agreement to collect a year’s salary and some benefits. Wow, it could only happen in the Buffalo Schools! However, I’d still question why I didn’t accept the $500,000 offered by the business community, which recognized my failures before the rest of the community recognized them.

John Oehler