Multi-Grade Class Not Best Option for Batavia
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There has been an initial movement to reduce the number of sections/classes in the Batavia Elementary Schools. The proposed recommendation is for split level classes comprised of second and third graders at Grace McWayne, and third and fourth graders at Hoover Wood. We believe the risks of this plan will likely outweigh the potential benefits.
At its root, the split level classroom is:
- A cost saving initiative for the district
- A decision made for budgeting reduction purposes- not instructional design
- Not intended to accelerate learning for the students
- At best, neutral to children's learning*
*Research reflects that even when done properly, split level classrooms result in a neutral effect on children's education.
It has been communicated that split classes will transcend the 2017-2018 school year, and be invoked as the solution to larger class sizes in the future, at varying grade levels across the district. Even if this plan does not directly impact one of your children for the upcoming school year, there is a good chance it will in the future.
The solution to remedy large class sizes should not be to combine two grade levels in an attempt to save the cost of adding another teacher. Nor should the solution be to compress students into two classes with extremely large sizes.
We believe the proper solution is to allow grade levels to have as many same-grade sections as necessary to keep classes at or below contractual sizes. It is our hope that the district puts the educational, emotional, and social needs of the children first by doing just that.
If you are concerned about how your tax dollars are being spent and what this means for our children's education, please consider signing our petition to let the BPS Board of Education know how you feel. If you know other concerned parents and taxpayers in the community, please share this petition to help spread the word.
Your help is greatly appreciated.
- Concerned Batavia Community Members
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