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SEP 15 - SEP 22, 2015

Smarter Than Sixth Graders, New Council Majority Seems Likely Here

By Mike Hudson

SEP 15, 2015

Kristen Grandinetti is back on Facebook again.
Ezra Scott (seated center) with friends, relatives, and supporters and token attorney Peter A. Reese with wife Ellen standing center.

If having three schoolteachers on the Niagara Falls City Council is good, wouldn’t having all five Council seats occupied by employees of the Niagara Falls City School District be even better?

Currently, Council members Kristen Grandinetti and Andrew Touma represent the school district on the Council. Last week, Ezra Scott received more votes than anyone else running for Council in the Democratic primary, and it seems likely he will win in November’s general election as well.

All three are primary school teachers in the city school district. The overriding qualification needed to be a primary school teacher is actually knowing more than a sixth grader, and Grandinetti, Touma and Scott all apparently meet this criteria.

During the course of any given year, the city often interacts with the school district in ways that need approval by the Council. The sale and transfer of South Junior High School and the decision by the city to underwrite a “summer camp” for a number of schoolchildren are but two fairly recent instances of this interaction.

In the past, school teachers serving on the Council routinely recused themselves when matters involving the school district came before them. Frank Soda, Joe D’Angelo and Sam Fruscione were just a few of the teachers who believed that voting on school district related matters constituted a conflict of interest.

All that changed when Grandinetti was elected. She doesn’t see any conflict at all, she has said.

She has voted consistently in favor of proposals that directly benefit the school district, her employer.

Perhaps she believes that the school district and the city are all part of one big beneficent government overlooking and taking care of the needy population of the most highly taxed municipality in the entire state.

In 2013, she was joined by Touma, and this year her colleague Scott appears ready to lend a hand.

At the beginning of August, Grandinetti stopped posting on her Facebook page, where her  positions on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues, sex-ed in the city schools and the Catholic Church have been a source of controversy.

She announced she would not post again until the day after the primary and, with Dyster the apparent victor, she was true to her word. Last week, she began posting again with this bit of doggerel.






It was comforting in a way. The childlike use of all capital letters, the simple sentiment. It could be read to a kindergartner, which is the “grade” Grandinetti teachers.

In fact, it could have been read by a kindergartner. Or written by one.






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