Bethany Krett 0

Delay the Decision for Multi-Age Classrooms at Booth Free School

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To the Region 12 Board of Education, Booth Free School administrators, teachers, parents and the Roxbury community members:

We all love our community and our school and want to support our students in the best way possible, however we believe that the decision to transition Booth Free School to a Multi-Age Classroom model has been done in haste and without sufficient community involvement.

Whether or not this is a good thing for our school in the long run, remains an unanswered question. Despite this, it appears as though the administration has already made the decision to move Booth Free to School to a Multi-Age Classroom model without any community input and has only brought it to the attention of the parents a few short weeks before everything must be finalized in order to offer teacher contracts for the upcoming school year.

We have been given the opportunity to participate in a series "community meetings" on a very short timeline. However, these meetings appear to be designed to give us the opportunity to discuss issues with the transition and offer input on whether it would be a 2 classroom or 3 classroom model, without leaving room for parents express whether or not they feel this change is a good idea in the first place.

We don't understand why the decision seems to have already been made without more back and forth discussion and why it is being implemented so quickly. Recent enrollment information indicates that student numbers will remain the same at Booth Free School next year, so there is no urgent need to implement this change now. We would like to take more time to better understand the advantages and disadvantages that such a model would present.

Furthermore, it was mentioned at one of the community meetings that a marketing firm will be hired to advertise the new model and try to bring in students from outside the region. Why was this not tried prior to deciding a change to the classroom structure was needed? Booth Free School is a wonderful school as is, why not promote that?

Whether or not a multi-age classroom is ultimately a good model for our school, we strongly believe that more time should be given for a more thorough, thoughtful, 2-way discussion before such a major change is made.

For this reason, we are requesting a delay on the decision for multi-age classrooms at Booth Free School until the 2021/2022 school year at the earliest. This more relaxed schedule will allow for more research, deeper discussions, and better planning so we can all feel that the best decision is being made for our children.

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