Geoff Dillon 0

Avoid Split Classes at Vandenbos in September

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In Summary - For the upcoming school year, there will be fewer resources in the English track at our school - that means fewer teachers and the possibility of split grades for children as young as Grade 3 next year - read on for more details, and for details on how you can let the school and the board know how you feel about these changes. 


As fellow parents of a student in the English track at Captain Michael Vandenbos, we've been concerned by rumours of fewer teachers at our school next year for the English track, and the possibility of split classes for next year's Grade 3's and potentially other classes heading into the 2010-2011 school year. A number of you told me that you are not comfortable with your child being in a split grade, particularly this early in their academic career. 

In the last 2 weeks, I've spoken with a representative from the Durham District School Board and a local trustee about these rumours. They confirmed that one teaching resource is being taken out of the English program next year due to lower English enrollment at our school. That means fewer teachers in the English track next year. 

In my view, this decision can be viewed as unfortunate for a number of reasons:

- your property taxes certainly won't be going down next year but it looks like the resources for your child could be cut back

- It also means that there is a potential for children as young as next year's Grade 3's to be in a split grade (either a 2/3 or a 3/4) in September

It's worth noting that this is not yet finalized - everyone I've talked to at the board level indicated that nothing has been set in stone yet, but plans are being made very soon. 

- Most of you who have talked to me about this are concerned about the potential impact of having Grade 3's in a split class environment. 
- Many of you feel that your child won't get the same level of attention in a class where the teacher has the challenging job of juggling two grades at the same time. 
- Grade 3 is also the year where students must take mandatory EQAO testing.

IF YOU FEEL STRONGLY ABOUT AVOIDING SPLIT GRADES FOR NEXT YEAR'S GRADE 3 CLASS, AND ABOUT SUSTAINING THE TEACHING RESOURCES FOR THE ENGLISH TRACK FOR ALL STUDENTS AT OUR SCHOOL, I encourage you to voice your opinion by signing the petition below. We will share this information with the Board, our elected trustees, and the Principal so that they are aware of the views in the school community on this issue. 

(Your email address will not be shared - you can see who else has already signed by clicking the "Signatures" tab above)

Thanks for your time.


Geoff Dillon


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