Panic on classroom size

The Friday afternoon before the school year started we received a welcome call from London’s new teacher introducing herself and giving us some information about the upcoming year.  My husband took the call and took down all the information and afterwards relayed it to me, which included the fact that London would be in a class with 40 students and 2 teachers.  Immediately I flipped, for having 40 kids in one space to me spelled D.I.S.A.S.T.E.R.  simply from a noise/distraction  know this first hand after volunteering in London’s kindergarden class.  For the last two years (JK &SK), London was in a cramped class of 30 classmates for JK &SK and the noise levels were honestly deafening.  Every time we left her room after volunteering for an hour, it took awhile for our nervous system  to calm back down. So of course when we both heard about the size of London’s class we panicked thinking this was not the right class for her. Oh and did I mention, London was entering a Spanish Bilingual program?

So I immediately phoned the schools principal to understand further how this was going to work and was told she was in a meeting. I left my contact information and a brief message on how I was concerned about the class size.  So then I phoned a couple of other schools, including Reilly’s school to see if they would accept London in case we decided to move her.  The funny thing is when London heard about the class size on her own she on her own was a little mortified, again because of what it could mean on the noise front.  The good news is that Reilly’s school would still accept London if we wanted to make a change.

By dinner time, I had not received any call back from the principal and was still flipping out as to this news.  At 8.15 pm the phone rang and it was the principal phoning from home. You could hear her kids in the background and she said as a mom she didn’t want me to worry about this all weekend and wanted to answer my questions.  I truly appreciated that and she proceeded to tell me that it was the two teachers that wanted to co-teach or team teach this class and by following this approach they believe the kids would have better learning experiences then if the class was split into two.  The principal assured me that this decision was not one to save money, or due to limited space in the school.  She said she could not guarantee that it would work but she does have experience with these types of classes at other schools and they often work.

An hour before that call I was ready to move London but afterwards I was willing to give it a go.  So we are now just over one week into school and the class is down to 36 students, I assume some parents weren’t willing to take the risk after hearing the last minute news.  So far though on our front it is working out well. Each teacher has about 18 students under their primary administration duty and then I gather they coordinate their teaching exercises from there.   We have parent teacher conferences at the end of next week so we will understand further how it works but the fact that London looks forward to going to school is a plus.  Unfortunately when I ask her about her favourite part of the day it is always recess.  LOL.

Photo taken of London this past weekend at Spruce Meadows.

Photo taken of London this past weekend at Spruce Meadows.

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