Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Susan Semonick On Schools - Education Tidbits Part 2a

The following is another excerpt from Grade Configurations in K-12 Schools.

What factors do school districts consider when deciding on grade configuration? Researchers at the Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory looked at eight schools with seven different grade spans. They examined the history of each school's decision on grade configuration along with observed advantages and disadvantages of each configuration and principals' comments on the success of their programs (Paglin & Fager, 1997). Based on this research, Paglin and Fager compiled a list of nine factors that school districts might want to consider when making decisions about grade configurations of individual schools:

• the cost and length of student travel, particularly in a school district that covers a large area
• a possible increase or decrease in parent involvement, possibly affected by the distance to the school and the number of schools a family's children attend
• the number of students at each grade level, which may affect class groupings and courses offered
• the effect of school setting on achievement, particularly for grades 6-9
• effect on whether the neighborhood schools close or remain open
• the number of school transitions for students
• the opportunities for interaction between age groups
• the influence of older students on younger students
• the building design-is it suitable for only a few or for several grade levels?
Paglin and Fager concluded that designing a school system to use a particular span of grades in individual schools will not in itself guarantee that students will learn well and be well adjusted.

According to public opinion, none of these points have been covered in the report that 4 out of 7 trustees are basically basing their vote on.

DPAC is trying to survey public opinion. If I had to vote on an option, it would be to close LSS, for then only the grades 9-11 students would be affected for next year; and if you went the route of phasing it out, it would affect even less. Closing classrooms as the students move through the system would affect even less.

The other option I suggest is to make the Fundamental program a full K-12. Move it to LSS and LEC can remain or move to LFMSS and close the Fundamental Elementary building and re-sell for a profit now that it is fixed up. This would affect the least amount of students create the capital funds required for the expansion of REMSS, We would not have to reconfigure the road system and keep residents happy, allow the waitlist to be cleared for the fundamental and we would not have overcrowding. You would close LSS as a non-choice secondary for September 2009. The current LSS students could go to ACSS, DWP or HDS with grade eight students from LSS being placed in HDS for September 2008. Sound to logical maybe.

To summarize, this Board should be reported to the Education minister. This middle school proposal is not acceptable to be even a suggestion at this time. For them to continue from this point on can only be seen as self-serving of their egos.

Respectfully submitted by
Susan Semonick

Special note to HD Stafford Parents

You may want to call in to speak with the Minister of Education, Shirley Bond, who along with Saanich North and the Islands MLA, Murray Coell, will be featured on Shaw TV's Voice of BC from 8:00-9:00 pm on Thursday, October 25th to discuss education in British Columbia.

No comments:

Post a Comment