UB-Buffalo Public Schools Partnership to Be Featured at National Conference

Release Date: February 17, 2009

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A model for educational collaboration between UB and the Buffalo Public Schools -- announced in 2006 by Mayor Byron Brown, UB President John Simpson and BPS Superintendent James Williams -- will be the subject of a national conference in April.

BUFFALO, N.Y. A University at Buffalo model for educational collaboration will take center stage at a national conference in April designed to share the ongoing success of UB's partnership with the Buffalo Public Schools.

The featured presentation in the "Ask the Experts" series is called "Tapping the Potential of Higher Education Partnerships: A Strategic Approach to Collaboration," and will be given by Mara B. Huber, special assistant to the President for Educational Initiatives at UB, and Buffalo Public Schools Superintendent James A. Williams.

Huber and Williams' presentation will be given at the National School Boards Association Annual Conference from 2 to 3:15 p.m. Monday, April 6, in San Diego. Their presentation represents an initial step toward sharing the UB/Buffalo Public Schools Partnership model with national audiences.

"In this climate of dwindling resources and increasing expectations, educational partnerships are suddenly above the radar," says Huber. "Gone are the days of casual dalliances with college and business partners resulting in endless luncheons, photo opportunities and flexible pots of money. In their place loom long-term commitments, shared accountability and very real resources tied to partnership outcomes."

The UB/Buffalo Public Schools Partnership has already established a model for collaboration that embodies the principles Huber and Williams will be explaining at the conference. UB and the Buffalo Public Schools created their partnership in December 2006 with the goal of drawing on expertise across the university to improve outcomes for all students in the schools, and increasing the numbers of students who graduate from high school interested in – and ready for – attending college.

Both UB and the Buffalo Public Schools have collaborated on several projects since establishing the partnership in 2006. UB conducted a science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) summer camp last August for 50 high-achieving eighth graders in Buffalo area schools held at the Buffalo Museum of Science. The partnership also chose three outstanding Buffalo Public School graduating seniors for full four-year tuition scholarships at UB in fall 2008 and will select two more for 2009.

The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public university, a flagship institution in the State University of New York system and its largest and most comprehensive campus. UB's more than 28,000 students pursue their academic interests through more than 300 undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs. Founded in 1846, the University at Buffalo is a member of the Association of American Universities.

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