Buffalo, NY (WBEN) The new school year is upon us, and there are a number of challenges districts around the area face.
Grand Island's school year started last Wednesday, and Superintendent Robert Christmann says the purpose of that is handle any last minute housekeeping issues. "That gives us the opportunity to pick up on areas we have to make adjustments on. There's schedule changes for both teachers and students, and this gives us the opportunity to clean up any that happens last minute," explains Christmann. "Then when we come back from Labor Day, we can start off without any hitches." He says parents and staff have supported the early start.
Christmann says a big challenge this year will be for teachers and administrators. "We are much more accountable for the performance of our students because of changes with the professional performance review process," he notes.
Classes start today at Starpoint, and Superintendent C. Douglas Whelan says the biggest challenge is dealing with a budget of $45 million, and state aid reductions. "We have 2,800 students in our district, and meeting the needs of every child with that much money is a challenge in itself," says Whelan. "They have different needs. We address these needs, and come to us as children who may not know how to tie their shoes, and end up graduating with advanced Regents diplomas. So, that takes a tremendous effort to instruct them and provide them with skills. It's a challenge."