By Bob Belcher
Corsicana Daily Sun
The Corsicana Independent School District Board of Trustees approved the submission of class-size waivers this week for elementary grades in the district.
State law dictates class sizes in Kindergarten through 4th grade have a maximum size of 22 students to one teacher. Some classrooms in the district have exceeded that number by one or two students.
So far, that hasn’t presented an instructional problem, according to Dr. Joe Young, Deputy Superintendent. But, because of the law, the district still must go through the waiver process to receive permission from the state to continue with class sizes as they are.
Increased enrollment and reduced state funding are the cause of the imbalance, Young said. That, combined with the difficulty the district is having in hiring bi-lingual teachers has forced the district to exceed the maximums by one or two students.
“They are out there,” Young said of the bi-lingual teachers, but said they either work in South Texas to be close to family, or in North Texas where salaries are beyond what the CISD can pay.
Trustees Leah Blackard and Fr. Ed Monk both expressed concern that teachers in the affected classrooms are being given extra help with teachers aides assigned to them if needed.
“I would feel better voting for this if ... teachers had been offered an aide for class and said ‘no,’” she said.
Young said the teachers were “not shy” and would ask for help if they needed it. He said the administration was closely monitoring the classrooms in need of the waiver and would respond with extra help if necessary.
“I want to make sure the teachers know they can ask for an aide,” Monk said. “I would never be upset spending money on a teacher.”
Trustees also heard information about a change in a photography class at CHS, the planned purchase of a new bus for student transportation; the planned purchase of 375 computers for the district; proposed minor changes to the district’s standardized dress policy; and heard plans for a field trip for 5th graders to an Outdoor School in May 2013 in Marble Falls.
Trustees meet again at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 12 in the school administration building.
Bob Belcher may be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Want to “Soundoff” on this story? Email: email@example.com