Some concerned reading teachers have recently written us about changes happening in the Buffalo school district’s Reading Department and asked if The News could look into it. They asked who’s in charge of the district’s reading program now that the current supervisor of reading has been reassigned as assistant principal of Lorraine Academy.
"There has been no directive from Dr. Brown as to who is in charge of elementary reading," said one teacher. "How can we no longer have a Department of Reading? Reading teachers and instructional coaches are all very confused."
According to district spokeswoman Elena Cala, who also consulted with Chief of Talent Management Darren Brown, the district's Reading Department has been restructured, but hasn't gone away. She said the district's supervisor of reading, Sharon McCormick, has been temporarily assigned as an assistant principal at Lorraine Academy but will not lose her old job. Her title has been changed from "supervisor" to "instructional specialist - reading" but she'll keep her same job responsibilities after her temporary assignment is completed, Cala said.
As far as who is currently "in charge" while McCormick is serving as assistant principal elsewhere, Cala didn't name any one person. Instead, she referred to a literacy team at the central office and building level that comprises a "collective group of directors, instructional coaches, reading teachers, principals and assistant principals." The literacy team also includes the director of English language arts, Julie Romain, who is K - 12 certified (though teachers say she has more of a high school background), and Kathie Fennie, supervisor of early childhood curriculum, assessment, and Instruction.
Don't know how much that clarifies matters, but that's what we know.
-- Sandra Tan