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Two top Williamsville administrators defer retirement, get standing ovation

Williamsville School Board members took the unusual step of rescinding the retirements of two well-respected administrators, and instead extended their contracts Tuesday night.

Anna R. Cieri, assistant superintendent for exceptional education and student services, and Thomas R. Maturski, assistant superintendent for finance and management services, had submitted letters of retirement effective the end of the school year, which the board acted on in January.

But the board Tuesday voted to rescind their retirements and extend their contracts to June 30, 2019. Teachers and parents in the audience applauded the action, and board members and the superintendent joined in a standing ovation.

The board also gave a three-year extension to Marie Balen, assistant superintendent for instruction.

The administrators, who did not get raises this year, will receive raises of 2.7 percent for each of the three years of the extended contracts, Board President Ronald S. Shubert said.

“They are very valuable employees of our district.”

Some blamed the School Board and the superintendent for the loss of administrators. Teachers said morale in the district has suffered since the district placed Kim A. Kirsch on leave from her job as assistant superintendent for human resources and charged her with insubordination and misconduct. A hearing to fire Kirsch, which started last May, is still ongoing.

Teachers asked Tuesday for an independent investigation into the actions of Superintendent Scott Martzloff on the Kirsch matter and dealings with employees. Williamsville Teachers Association President Michelle Licht said the superintendent has met twice with the union in recent weeks, but the members took a vote and directed their leaders to stop meeting with him until there is an independent investigation.

She said Martzloff told union leaders “very clearly” that he would not advocate for an investigation, because it could hurt the district’s position in the Kirsch hearing.

But retaining the two administrators was seen as a positive sign.

email: bobrien@buffnews.com