By Richard Bammer
Staffing and student-teacher ratios, a contract for Google Chromebooks, and updates on Common Core, including math instruction, are on the agenda when Vacaville Unified leaders meet tonight.
In an annual rite, Randy Henry, the district’s chief human resources officer, will update the seven-member governing board on district staffing and class-size ratios, a district statistical snapshot of sorts.
In agenda documents, he noted that the district boasts nearly 12,300 students, 184 fewer than last year and 13.3 percent fewer than in 2004, a gradual but steady decline.
via Class sizes, computer contract, standards on VUSD agenda – The Reporter.
By Susan Winlow
School officials on Thursday will discuss current guidelines for class sizes in lower grades as the rules relate to a boost in state funding.
In order to receive the adjusted state funding, the new Local Control Funding Formula for school districts throughout California dictates a gradual drop in teacher-to-student ratios until the average class size from transitional kindergarten through third grade is 24 children.
The augmented funding is an additional 10.4 percent of the base funding for transitional kindergarten through third grade.
Districts can choose to opt out of the additional funding, provided they use collective bargaining to agree upon an alternative annual class enrollment site average. Charter schools do not have to comply with the law but still receive the Grade Span Adjustment funding.
via Vacaville school trustees to discuss staffing ratios Daily Republic.
By Richard Bammer
The benefits of class-size reduction in California public schools are manifold, and one of them is the teacher business.
Under Gov. Jerry Brown’s Local Control Funding Formula, K-3 classes must reach a student-teacher ratio of 24 to 1 by 2021, prompting the state’s school districts to hire more instructors.
As many Solano districts have done in recent months, Fairfield-Suisun Unified leaders, when they meet tonight, likely will approve a class-size reduction program for TK-3 classes across 16 elementary campuses in the county’s largest school district.
via Schools plan for class-size reduction – The Reporter.
By Richard Bammer
The tax parcel process and class size reduction in the primary grades, transitional kindergarten through third, are two informational items on an otherwise relatively routine school district agenda when Fairfield-Suisun leaders meet tonight in open session.
Like Vacaville trustees, those in Fairfield, who govern the largest school district in Solano County, are considering placing a bond measure on the Nov. 4 ballot to pay for facilities upgrades, among other things.
Keith Weaver of Government Financial Strategies, a Sacramento-based independent public finance consulting firm, will make a presentation to the seven-member board. He will reveal a proposed timeline.
via Bond, class size top Fairfield-Suisun agenda – The Reporter.
By Mike Corpos
Local school officials are beginning an analysis designed to provide smaller class sizes in early grades within the next seven years.
Vacaville school board members received updates Thursday on personnel levels and facilities, both aimed at steering eventual decisions on implementation of new state funding requirements.
via Vacaville school board gets staffing, facilities updates Daily Republic.
By Lillian Mongeau
Just weeks into the school year, some districts are struggling with a provision in California’s dramatic revision of its school financing system that calls for smaller class sizes in grades K-3.
The new funding formula, signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown in July, gives school districts additional funds if they can keep the average class size for kindergarten though 3rd grade to 24 at all of their schools, or work toward achieving that goal. At full funding under the new formula in 2021, districts that meet the target will receive $712, on top of the K-3 per-student base rate of $6,845. (These figures do not account for cost-of-living increases that will be factored annually into the new formula.)
via New funding formula revives push for smaller class sizes | EdSource Today.
Ever since Dixon Unified eliminated class size reduction in the lower primary grades five years ago, Tremont Elementary kindergarten teacher Mia Lodigiani has never had less than 30 children in her classroom.
That’s 30 enthusiastic 5-and 6-year-olds with 30 backpacks, 30 pairs of shoes that need to be tied, 30 scissors to hold in their hands, 30 art projects, 30 Capri Sun drinks that need to be opened, and 60 hands going in all directions.
via Teachers celebrate the return of smaller… – The Dixon Tribune | Facebook.
DUSD Superintendent and Board have made leaps in restoring programs and direct services to students district-wide, according to DUSD Board Vice President, Irina Okhremtchouk.
In an email to the Patch, Okhremtchouk stated the Board is strongly committed to restoring programs and direct services to DUSD students, in order to improve academic achievement district-wide, while aligning with the District’s values, “We believe that all students can learn. Therefore, it is our collective responsibility to ensure that all students do learn, grow, and succeed.”
via DUSD Board Makes Efforts in Restoring Programs for the Coming School Year – Top News – Dixon, CA Patch.
Brianna Boyd, Editor
Teachers have wanted it back for years and Dixon Unified’s board of trustees made it a reality on Thursday – class size reduction will return to the lower primary grades this fall.
The trustees voted 3-1 Thursday to reduce kindergarten to third grade class sizes from the 29:1 that it has been for the last four years to 25:1. Trustee Herb Cross cast the dissenting vote and board president Gil Pinon was absent from the meeting.
via Dixon Tribune’s Facebook Wall.
By Richard Bammer/ RBammer@TheReporter.com
In a dramatic shift, coming as projected state aid remains unknown, Dixon Unified leaders on Thursday agreed to lower K-3 class sizes from 30 to 1 to 25 to 1 for the coming school year.After what one observer called “intense, passionate debate,” trustees voted 3 to 1, with one board member absent, to make the change, effective when classes resume in the district on Aug. 14.
via Dixon Unified School District to reduce class sizes – The Reporter.
‘Days of small K-3 classes likely over,” announced a recent Reporter headline atop a news article quoting education officials who predict that California’s attempt to cap at 20 the number of students in the primary grades would not be resumed.
One can only hope that these reports of class size reduction’s demise have been greatly exaggerated, to borrow a phrase from Mark Twain, because it’s hard to believe that cramming 30 or more 5-, 6- or 7-year-olds into a single classroom is an effective way to teach.
California launched class-size reduction in 1996 but, because it didn’t immediately cure every ill of public education, its effectiveness has been routinely called into question.
via Updated: January 31, 2013 1:02:39 AM PST.
By Louis Freedberg and Sue Frey ~ EdSource Extra
In just three years, California’s class size reduction program in kindergarten through the 3rd grade has unraveled at a rapid rate, and continues to do so.
The purpose of the program, which began in 1996 when the state was enjoying a budget surplus, was to reduce class sizes in those early grades to 20 students, in the belief that smaller class sizes improve student academic outcomes.
The program has cost the state some $25 billion in direct funding from Sacramento since its inception, in addition to the billions more that local school districts have had to spend to cover the full costs of the program.
But an EdSource survey of the state’s 30 largest school districts found half of the districts now have 30 or more students in one or more K–3 grades during the current school year. (Survey results were based on information supplied by school officials.)
via Class size reduction program continues to unravel.