May 19, 2016
Dear Center School Families,
May is a month when we begin to look ahead to the new year at Center School. The school calendar, staffing, space usage, and even schedules for the 2016-2017 school year are planned. Detailed pre- planning in many areas helps provide the structure for a strong beginning to our school year.
One significant and carefully planned task is the formation of classes. We recognize that students and parents look forward to class placement with anticipation and perhaps with a level of apprehension. My goal with this communication is to help you understand the process used at Center School to place students.
How many classes are there at each grade level?
Kindergarten: two full day classes with strong possibility of a third full day class
1st: 3 classes 4th: 4 classes
2nd: 3 classes 5th: 4 classes
3rd: 4 classes
What factors are considered when forming classes?
Consideration of the following:
Who will form the class lists for next year?
The person who knows your child best as a learner is usually her classroom teacher. She is the key member of the team along with other grade level teachers. Teachers consult with Resource Team members including: School Adjustment Counselor Carol Connery; Reading Specialist Valerie Fritz; Math Specialist Colleen Cummings; Special Education teachers; Speech and Language Therapist Tracy O’Gara. Special subject area teachers are asked for feedback as well. I review class rosters with the teachers with ongoing review throughout the summer; changes may be made based on reviews and placement of new students.
When will I know my child’s classroom assignment for next year?
The assignment will not be named on the report card in June. Assignments will be shared with families in August. You will receive information regarding the specific date of the posting.
What if I prefer that my child have a specific teacher?
We respectfully ask that you trust the school team to determine the best placement for your child. We will not honor requests for specific teachers. We also request that you not place your child’s current teacher in an awkward or unprofessional position by asking her to comment on teachers in the next grade. We also gently suggest that you not form opinions based on what you have heard. Each classroom is as unique as each child, and an experience that parents may have had with their child in a class may be totally different from what your child may have in the very same classroom.
Very Important question: Do parents have input in the process?
YES. Your input began this year with your relationship with your child’s teacher. You provide insights and expertise about your child at conferences and through ongoing communications with your child’s teacher. You are invited to provide additional input by completing the Class Placement Parent Input Form . We will send a hard copy home with your child. (Please note that parent input forms are optional.)
The classroom placement meetings are a thoughtful process. Center School teachers and support staff strive to build learning environments that will support the diverse needs of our students. A “balanced” group of learners helps us achieve our goal of optimal growth and development for each child- both socially and academically.
Please contact me with questions or concerns regarding the placement process.
Thank -you for the trust you place in us to meet our students’ needs.
Donna Hutton, Principal