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Erie 1 BOCES
Education Campus
355 Harlem Rd.
West Seneca, NY

(716) 821-7000

Overview and History
School districts and taxpayers statewide depend on Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) to meet their educational and financial goals.

There are 19 school districts that are components of Erie 1 BOCES. Those districts are able to enroll in a variety of instructional and non-instructional services offered by Erie1 BOCES.

For more than 55 years, Erie 1 BOCES has been helping area school districts further contain costs by assisting them with district office functions such as cooperative purchasing, health insurance benefits, policy development and technology services.

In addition to offering a wide range of career programs for adults, Erie 1 BOCES’ three state-of-the-art career and technical centers also offer more than 25 programs to high school students. School districts also partner with Erie 1 BOCES to provide alternative and special education programs.

As a liaison office for New York State’s Department of Education, educators often visit Erie 1 BOCES’ campuses for training on technology integration, curriculum, New York State standards and reporting.

Erie 1 BOCES is home to one of the state’s 12 Regional Information Centers. The Western New York Regional Information Center (WNYRIC) serves more than 100 districts in five BOCES regions: Erie 1, Erie 2-Chautauqua-Cattaraugus, Cattaraugus- Allegany, Orleans/Niagara and Greater Southern Tier BOCES.

Erie 1 BOCES commits to those we serve - students, staff and communities - by understanding, anticipating and responding to their needs.

Erie 1 Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) was established in December of 1957 as a way for local school districts to collaborate on educational offerings while reducing their individual expenses.

Mr. Archie Harkness was the first district superintendent of Erie 1 BOCES. He served in that role for five years from 1958-1963.

At that time, Erie 1 BOCES’ board of education meetings were held at various school buildings within Williamsville and Amherst.

In 1962, a building on Aero Drive in Cheektowaga was named after Archie Harkness. At the March 20, 1962 board meeting, the minutes stated, "The Board of Cooperative Educational Services would like to take this opportunity to thank Mr. A.W. Harkness, District Superintendent, for his outstanding accomplishments, leadership, sound judgment and his forward attitude in the field of Educational Services and by showing their esteemed gratitude by naming our building The Harkness Center."

Today that building is still in use by Erie 1 BOCES and it is known as the Harkness Career & Technical Center.

District Superintendents of Erie 1 BOCES:
Archie Harkness      1958-1963
Ernest Hoeldtke       1963-1972
Clifford N. Crooks    1972-1985
Bob Loretan             1986-1996
Donald Ogilvie         1997-2014
Lynn Fusco              2015 - Present

Aid & Surplus
A percentage of the cost that districts spend on BOCES shared services is reimbursed by New York State through the "BOCES Aid" formula.

The aid formula for Erie 1 BOCES' component districts range from 62 to 82 percent.

BOCES Surplus is money that was not spent during the year. As such, it is returned to the component school districts.
  • BOCES Surplus is a mandated accounting process that protects school districts and taxpayers because excess funds are always returned.
  • BOCES annual costs are set to handle unexpected liabilities, such as energy increases, and fluctuations in student enrollment. This ensures that BOCES are not requesting critical, operational funds from school districts in the middle of the school year.
  • The amount of money refunded is low when compared to BOCES’ budget or to the aggregate school district budgets. For example, at Erie 1 BOCES the Surplus represents 3% of the total annual budget.

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