Wednesday, November 19, 2008

As The Kindergarten Turns

An interesting letter came home in Peter's backpack yesterday.

It seems that all four Kindergarten classes are at or over the North Carolina state law limit of 23 children. So the principal is in the process of hiring a new teacher and when the kids get back from winter break there will be five Kindergarten classes instead of four.

How exciting for the kids! And of course I say that with my tongue gouging out of my cheek.

They will be taking 4-6 kids out of each of the existing classes and putting them in the new class.

We don't know yet which kids will be uprooted from their current class and placed in the new class.

We don't know who the new teacher will be. I can only imagine that there are large numbers of excellent teachers to hire from in the middle of the school year. (I hope I'm wrong.)

I'm not even sure where the actually fifth classroom is going to be.

The only positive out of this whole mess is that all of the classes will be smaller and each child will theoretically receive a better education.

I just want to know why they didn't plan for this before now. Last year there were 5 Kindergarten classes. Why didn't they just keep 5 Kindergarten classes this year expecting that new kids would join raising them up to their limit?

I am sure the school was trying to save money. But it seems to me it was at the expense of at bunch of unsuspecting 5-year-olds.

Peter is not happy about this potential change and neither am I. I am trying to keep an open mind and I'm praying for the best possible outcome for Peter.

But why do I find myself Googling "Homeschooling" more and more these days?

post signature

35 comments:

Denise said...

Such a mess sweetie, praying for you, and dear Peter.

He And Me + 3 said...

Public education can be frustrating sometimes no doubt. I hear you on the homeschooling thing. But I would rather have the smaller classes for sure and maybe this new teacher will be awesome! God never makes mistakes, so where Peter is placed after break is where he was meant to be. Keep us posted on where he ends up. Fun times...I know. :(

Melanie said...

Oh, dear.. what a mess! Praying with you that it all works out for the best.

Tracy said...

Sometimes its hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel, but maybe it all become very clear once the changes are made. Either way I hope Peter ends up where he wants to be. It's always something, isn't?

RR Mama said...

I see both sides to this. I remember being uprooted from my beloved 5th class to go to a new teacher. I remember crying and hating it. Now that Hubs is a teacher, the see the difference it makes with a smaller class. Texas has the same law but the public school where my children attend have their own limit. 15 children, unless an unforeseen event occurs. I love that my children get the indiviual time and attention. It also makes for a much happier teacher. And that is a blessing right there! Good luck. I will be praying for you and Peter.

Pam said...

Oooh, as a former kindergarten teacher, this idea gives me a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. It also raises a lot of questions in my mind. How will they choose? Will it be a lottery? Will the teachers be asked to give names? As teachers, we are not supposed to have favorites, but let's face it--we do...and we also have students God has placed in our lives to stretch us. I considered my students to be MINE, like I was a momma hen with sometimes as many as 30 chicks. YOU CAN'T TAKE MY BABIES!!!

I also feel bad for whoever the new teacher will be. She (or he) will have an uphill battle to win over the kids and parents. I would not worry about the caliber of teacher, though. There may be a great number of good reasons why she has not been teaching this past semester.

Another option is Christian school. I happen to know a good one I could recommend...

I agree that praying about it is definitely the best thing to do.

Debbie said...

Change is always scary. But you also know most things work out the way they are meant to. I will also pray that all will be well.

eetomost said...

It does seem silly to have only 4 classes when there were 5 last year??? Makes you wonder if they are only interested in saving money rather than educating our children. I hope it works out so that your son is not moved to another class:)

Leigh-NC

My Three Sons said...

I'd be worried too. I'm not sure what the state max is in IL but my son is in a class with 26 Kindergarteners. I worry because he's so stinkin' smart that he could really use extra help in being challenged but they have one aide to share amoungst the two K classes and so far (knock on wood) it seems to be enough to keep him engaged enough that he's not bored and causing trouble.

Andrea said...

That will definitely be hard on the children and the parents as well. I hope everything will work out!

jaime said...

i think my kindergarten class had like 12 kids...so i can't imagine that many lil kiddies running around! I think this will be a good thing, maybe hard transition for some...but good down the road. I do agree w/ you about changing it from LAST YEAR! it's always about money...so sad.

Susan Hight said...

I feel your pain, I really do. Emily was uprooted out of her kindergarten class last year. She had a terrible time adjusting. She is one that doesn't accept change well.

Looking back, I'm glad that if it had to happen that it happened in kindergarten and not in first grade since first grade is so fast paced.

I didn't feel that Emily was advancing as she should in Kindergarten with the new teacher so I worked a lot with her. I did flash cards of numbers and letters and sight words plus I read a bunch to her.

Everything will work out. Hang in there. I hope that the changes will be to Peter's advantage.

Courtney said...

Beth, I can imagine your worry. I would be anxious as well, but maybe you'll be pleasantly surprised at how resilient those Kindergartener's are.

Would you mind emailing me and letting me know if this is WSFCS? I'm in Winston; I was a computer teacher at a local private school and was looking for a teaching job this school year in the public system with no such luck. Anyway, it's a long shot but if this is close to me I may want to talk to the school....

Jaina said...

Yeah, that's poor planning on their part. My mom started homeschooling my brothers this year for a variety of reasons, and they're loving it. :)

Named Alicia said...

Beth, I'm sorry to hear that! I hope everything works out well. And yes, you could always join us homeschooling mamas. It really is not as difficult as it looks!

Have a great day, my friend!

Annikke said...

I hear ya on the homeschooling thing.

Just know the teacher (the current one) is probably involved in splitting up the kids and she will do her best to not move any child by him or herself and they will probably be moved with a friend.

Or think of it this way, whether he stays or moves, maybe there is a child that is in the class that is causing problems for him and he will be able to open up more once the 5th class is set up. Who knows. This may be a huge blessing in disguise!

Think positive! Hang in there and be sure to keep us all posted!

Mari said...

Yes - that's poor planning. I would be upset, especially if my kid had to change classes.

rhemashope said...

This happened to my daughter last year, and I was informed over the phone (only a few weeks before the change) that she would be in a new classroom with all new teachers, aides, educational coordinator, etc. You "know" my daughter, and I know you can appreciate how devastating a small change can be, let alone lots of big changes. And we had developed such bonds with her old staff. But I trusted that God cares about these little details. We endured the transition, and things worked out just fine. Peter will end up just where God wants him.

Musings of a Housewife said...

Good grief! That is annoying. UGH. Hey, thanks for putting my giveaway button right up there at the top! :-)

jennwa said...

Home schooling! Let me know when you start, I will be sending you 4 more students.

Brittany said...

Sorry to hear that! Crazy school systems! I'll pray for you all!

Kimberly said...

As a public school teacher in your town, I can tell you that sometimes the school is told by the district how many teachers they can have per grade level based on projected numbers. The school doesn't really have a say in that. Then if more kids enroll, they have to add teachers because you can only have so many kids per classroom. My school recently added an extra second grade class for this same reason.

Don't hate the school. Sometimes its not their fault :-)

My Goodness said...

Aw, that stinks...I can't imagine having to change at that age.

Maybe he won't be one of the ones to move...

Keep Praying!

Way More Homemade said...

The problem with planning for kindergarten, at least in Texas, is that it's not required. It's totally optional and difficult to plan for.

Anyways... you guys hang in there. That's tough.

Donna

Badness Jones said...

That sucks! Why do I sometimes think that the schools are organized more for the teachers (and more often that the BOARD MEMBERS) benefit than for the children's? I never thought it would happen, but I've definitely become THAT mom, the one who complains, and whose has already had the Principal call me twice this year to address my noisy concerns. Oh well, it's my job to be their advocate...not to be popular....

Maggie said...

No kidding - why do they wait until the middle of the year to make decisions like that?! Change like that is never fun for the kids, but maybe it will be better in the longrun. One on one time is so important, and most kids just don't get that these days in public schools. If we could homeschool, we most definitely would. Unfortunately, it just doesn't make sense for us financially. But I know my oldest boy would benefit from it!

Lisa said...

That's a pain, huh? If I can offer one ray of sunshine, there are a lot of grads who graduate in December & they'll have their pick of the litter as to who they want to hire! I hope in the end you get what is best for Peter!

Fearless Mom said...

The school only wants what it believes is "best" for the kids. And no matter how small the class size is, it will never beat the one-on-one interaction that you can provide by homeschooling.

Pam
http://fearlessmom.blogspot.com

Laural Out Loud said...

Change is such a big deal at this age! But there's nothing you or anyone else can do about the situation at this point except try to make it as smooth a transition as possible. Even the kids that aren't moved are going to miss some of their classmates that do go. Anyway, I'm sure you'll be the rock that your son needs no matter what happens.

Totallyscrappy said...

Praying that God continues to grant Peter a great kindergarten year, regardless of all the possible upheavel!
(Homeschooling always looks good to me on those mornings when we are running 10 minutes behind, but I guess if I were homeschooling our whole day would just be 10 minutes off rather than labeled with a "tardy".)

Christina said...

This happened here at the beginning of this year. My son was assigned a 5th grade teacher who he had been wanting and was very excited to have. About a month and a half in I got a letter stating he would be changed to another class since they were adding a 5th grade class same reason as you guys. Anyway he stressed, I stressed, I called the school, etc. Well he got in the class and I never heard another word. I went to the school for conference and met the teacher. I know why he didn't say another word. Not only was she young, organized, enthusiastic, smart, etc. but all the kids adored her. When I asked my son he said he loved her. So in others words all that stress for nothing. It has happened to me several times since we are a military family and have had kids uprooted in the middle of the year. As usual I stressed and so far the new schools and teachers have far exceeded my expectations. So I guess what I'm saying is don't stress the small stuff.

Mandy said...

Change is definitely not fun to deal with, but I know everything will work out for the best. But yes, you'd think that if they had 5 classes last year, they would know they would need AT LEAST as many this year.

Jenileigh said...

Check out my new homeschooling blog! The new design will be up in maybe a week but there are tons of links and all kinds of homeschooling information in the side bar if you are interested.

Praying all works out with K...and for God to lead you to the right decision for your family.

Hugs!

Lisa said...

Our school board has made mistakes in the past and the community looks at them in awe because they look clueless. In our district I have come to believe that they do care about the kids and they try different things and if it does not work they change it. It can be frustrating for parents and kids but I am sure the change is needed and everyone will adjust because I have found they do take precautions to make sure the kids are okay. Good Luck

Corey~living and loving said...

oh dear. I do hope this works out. Change is hard for everyone. sigh....