Wingo responds to missing child’s graduation after board bans him from school property

Local News

A Buffalo Common Council member is speaking for the first time since the Buffalo School Board banned him from school property. The board voted this week, which means council member Ulysees Wingo won’t be able to attend his son’s graduation Tuesday. 

“Actions have consequences,” said Buffalo Common Council member Ulysees Wingo. 

Buffalo Council member Ulysees Wingo says he’s learning that the hard way. He won’t be attending his son’s high school graduation next week, a decision made by the Buffalo Public School Board. 

“I’ve been my children’s constant, I’ve been there rock, their foundation. So for me not to be there at this once in a lifetime event is pretty tough. But, my son and I we’ve talked about it at length over the last several weeks, and we’ve come to terms with it,” said Wingo.

The board voted this week to ban Wingo from any school property for 18 months, that includes any school related function. This comes from an incident where Wingo, who has a conceal carry permit, brought a gun into Riverside High School back in May. He told the principal Jerome Piwko who then locked the gun in his office. Piwko has since resigned. 

“My heart goes out to Mr. Piwko regarding the incident itself, for putting him in that position,” said Wingo.

Some board members argued that making an exception for Wingo would be unfair when school policy restricts guns on school property. Wingo says he’ll miss not one graduation but two, as his daughter graduates next year. 

“One of the first things you want to make sure that you teach everyone is to be honest. Sometimes honesty costs and in this instance it costs me both my son and my daughter’s graduation,” said Wingo. 

It’s a lesson he says he hopes others will learn from. 

“I’m very appreciative of all of the folks that understand that no one’s perfect. There was a lapse in judgement and because of that mistake lives have been changed forever,” said Wingo.

After the incident, Wingo removed himself from his role as the chair of the education committee. It’s a role he says he hasn’t tried to get back. When asked if he would reach out to the district to get the ban reduced at all, Wingo says he hasn’t thought about that at this time.  

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