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EVES Fifth Grade class size

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We, the undersigned concerned residents of the Owen J. Roberts School District (hereinafter referred to as "the District"), respectfully request that the Board of Education (hereinafter referred to as "the Board") reconsider the proposed staffing for East Vincent Elementary School (hereinafter referred to as "EVES") for the 2012-2013 school year and assign an additional teacher for the incoming fifth grade class.

As the Board is aware, EVES consistently presents "hot spots" in terms of classrooms approaching maximum allowable size.  The Class of 2020 is the largest single class in the history of the District and staffing decisions at EVES for the academic years 2011-2012 and 2012-2013 have failed to take this into consideration.  In fact, EVES is slated for a decrease of three classroom teachers from 2011-2012 staffing, despite no corresponding decrease in student numbers. 

During the 2011-2012 academic year, the EVES class of 2020 was divided into three sections rather than four, resulting in overcrowded classrooms barely within the District's arbitrary policy allowing a maximum section size of 28 students.  Such overcrowded classrooms negatively impacted the Class of 2020's education in numerous ways, including but not limited to: physical overcrowding; disciplinary issues; time management issues; resource management issues and; a lack of required differentiated instruction for those students with IEPs and/or GIEPs.  These negative impacts will continue and magnify as the Class of 2020 enters fifth grade if EVES proceeds with only three fifth grade sections rather than four.

We acknowledge that EVES has an excellent record among the District's elementary schools with regard to test scores.  However, those scores provide only one datum point and do no address key concerns such as safety, quality of education, prevention of bullying, and equal or adequate personal attention per child, to name a few.  Further, we do not believe that the addition of part-time support teachers will adequately address these concerns.

We cannot simply throw our hands up and continue to inadequately staff our children's school.  We demand that the Board give our concerns and experiences utmost consideration and use our tax dollars to provide our children with a quality education.  We demand that our children be provided a safe and secure environment with adequate resources.  We demand that EVES be given a fourth fifth grade classroom for the academic year 2012-2013.


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