Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Personal account of why Small Class Size Works

My older guys middle school failed him terribly. He was a resource room child, who got lost in the system.
His resource room teacher could not teach math, she told us so.
He needed help in guess what?, Give up? Thats right Math.
His parent's would constantly be up at the school screaming for help for their child. We spoke with anyone who would listen. All except the Principal who never had time for a parent unless she liked them.
Every year in the middle of the school year we would get a report card that our child was failing and we needed to "come up to the school to discuss it". We would, and we would scream, but no one heard us.
His IEP was ignored, his parent's were ignored and our child at the end would pass, but barely. This went on and on and on his whole middle school education.
Fast forward to the Ninth grade same scenario us going up there fighting for our child and our child getting the shaft. He was held back that year.
We were livid. Especially when the Assistant Principal came up to us and told us that he loved our son as his own child and that he did everything he could for him. I feel sorry for his own children.

So Mr. & Mrs. Pissed Off had to put our child in a Private Summer school so he could make up all his classes. He loved it there and passed in the 90's. Even on those pesky regents.

The new school year started and he went to his regular new big High School (the one that middle one attends), he lasted two days when he begged to be taken out.
We brought him back to the Private School. We paid a fortune for our son to be educated but here is the greatness of this story. The largest class was 10 children if that. It was a small school, his graduating class was 30. My child went from not passing to being a master student.
From not understanding Math to be a math genius. Why? Because his teachers had time to sit with him and tutor him right there in the class.
There was no more fighting for our child. The teachers had time to actually sit with him in the classroom and help him. He loved school again.
In his Senior year he took Chemistry and was struggling. When his report card was mailed home I noticed that he went from a 95 in Science to a 65. I asked him what was going on? He replied that not to worry that the school already new he was struggling and took him out of the class of 10 and put him in the class of 5 so he could do better. All without me having to go up there and show some muscle.

When you walked into the school the Principals door was always open, for all parents not just the liked Parents. It was a wonderful experience and the one reason why our child is in the College of his choice.

I will fight for small class size until someone hears me, only because I personally know it works.


Pissed Off said...

No matter what anyone says, you are 200% correct about small classes. They do work. Years ago, I taught "college bound" kids. These were actually kids who needed remediation but someone deemed capable of learning. Why these kids were singled out, I have no idea, but they were. Class size was capped at 15. These kids all did well. Teachers had time to meet with them individually and offer individual help. We could call kids who were absent on a regular basis. Now when kids need remediation, they file 34 kids into a room build to hold 20 and just keep them in that room for 2 periods in a row. They call that program "ramp up" or "block programming" or who knows what else and don't understand why it doesn't work and why the kids don't behave.

Pissed Off Mom said...

It is a true shame what happens to children when parents can not bankrupt themselves to help them. But it is okay there is always a job in Wallmart waiting for them.

Pissed Off said...

People like Bloomberg need people to keep their toilets clean and to make their coffee. Could that be part of the reason they want to withhold smaller classes from our children.