BUFFALO, N.Y. – In perhaps one of the most outrageous examples of out-of-control spending, Buffalo Public Schools have been for years providing free elective cosmetic surgery to teachers, courtesy of taxpayers, of course.

Last school year, while the district could claim credit for a $50 million budget deficit, it actually increased spending on liposuction, face lifts, implants and tummy tucks for public employees.

Last school year, Buffalo spent $2.9 million on the benefit. The previous year it frittered away $2.7 million. It’s spent as much as $9 million in a single year on paying for these elective procedures.

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That’s the subject of our latest EAG Education Report:

Why does this happen? Why doesn’t the district simply say they can’t afford this anymore, especially because it doesn’t contribute ANYTHING to student learning?

Two reasons: First, it’s in the collective bargaining agreement, which carries the weight of law. But secondly, the spineless school board doesn’t have the guts to impose a new contract, which the district has been negotiating for nearly 10 years.

The way the law works is that the terms of the old agreement remain in effect until a new one is reached. If a union like Buffalo’s think it’s going to lose out, it simply won’t settle. And with union weenies like Ralph Hernandez posing as leaders, absolutely nothing will change.

Let us tell you about the academic performance Hernandez and the other “leaders” of Buffalo Public Schools have produced:

  • The district’s graduation rate in 2012 actually declined – to 47%.
  • One high school had a pathetic 24% graduation rate.
  • For the 2011-12 school year, only 25% of 8th graders were rated proficient in reading and writing.
  • 24% of 8th graders were proficient in math.

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And to top it all off, the district was spending $23,907 per student for these results.

This is child abuse, what’s happening in Buffalo. Between “leaders” like Hernandez and the priorities of the union, it’s any wonder there’s any learning going on at all.

And sadly, our hard-earned tax dollars are paying for every cent of it.