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By Frank Parlato Jr.

Mayor Paul Dyster, we learned, apparently loves charter schools -- schools paid for by the taxpayers -- without an elected school board to oversee them.

It is believed he has been talking to the charter school planners of Buffalo for some time now.

Consequently, a wedge is beginning to form between the education community and the know-it-all mayor who is imperiling the future of the Niagara Falls public school system by diverting per-capita allotments for students who opt out, causing potentially huge collective expenditures -- that which is joint to all students -- to be largely hampered.

Most union teachers voted for the mayor, who is now threatening their jobs.

Will the changeling mayor succeed in fooling the teachers and school administrators like he fooled city firefighters in 2007?

He tried mightily -- he is still trying -- to pull the planning wool over the eyes of Cayuga Island residents as he laid plans to pave Jayne Park and devalue Cayuga Island homes, all in the name of the Greenway Commission and his consultant friends.

He has repeatedly defied the wishes of his neighbors on Orchard Parkway, while insisting they go along with his plan to declare his own street a historic district. His friend and campaign contributor, Clint Brown, got the contract to do the historic paperwork, and the mayor himself is planning to renovate his own Orchard Parkway house. He will get a tax credit if he does the work, because his house is now in a historic district.

How long has Dyster been talking to the Buffalo interests that seek to open two new charter schools in our city, taking an estimated $15 million chunk out of the annual school budget by transferring it into the hands of business interests, like the Economic Development Group, and potentially causing the dismantling of the Niagara Falls public school system?

Do Mayor Dyster and campaign supporter Clinton Brown have a plan to offer the closed South Junior High as the charter school campus after the next election?

These questions are likely to remain unanswered unless the voting public, and in particular the teachers and employees of the Niagara Falls School District, are foolish enough to return Dyster to office.

Niagara Falls Reporter www.niagarafallsreporter.com April 5, 2011