"No" to the 3rd/4th grade split

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District 15 is proposing a multi-age 3rd/4th grade classroom for Thomas Jefferson.  We, parents, oppose this proposal for the following reasons:

1.  The children who will be impacted were initially part of a 1st/2nd grade multi-age classroom.  The current 2nd graders will spend 4 out of 6 years at TJ never having been taught grade appropriate curriculum.

2. Even the most skilled teachers can not account for the many different skill levels in a 3/4 split; in addition to the range of readers, maturity and needs of children. The top kids will not be challenged, the lower kids will struggle, and many others will fall through the cracks. 

3.  In addition, these same children will spend 4 out of their 6 years at TJ not in classes with their same age peers, missing the opportunity to develop meaningful friendships in their grade. 

4. We believe the current multi-age proposal is not based on educational philosophy, but is solely a financial decision.

4. We fully support the wonderful and talented teachers at TJ and want to empower them to teach to the best of their ability.

5. Therefore, we are requesting that 3 class sections are offered at the 3rd grade level and 3 sections are offered at the 4th grade level.  This request meets the needs of teachers, students, and honors the district's class size guidelines.