Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Vitti has other alternatives than raising the class size
Oy vey, in the world of education reform one reform has a track record of proven success. Here is a hint; it’s not vouchers, charter schools, or merit pay. If you guessed smaller classes well you’re obviously more attuned than our superintendent.
We certainly have other options than willfully increasing class sizes which is the plan that the super has suggested.
First let me say the state of Florida has deliberately put the super in a bind. They have said we must have smaller classes, which is a good thing, but they haven’t completely funded it, which is a bad thing, then they gutted it too which is a really bad thing. The people who say the legislature needs to relax the class size amendment are completely wrong, what the legislature needs to do is fund it correctly.
Now back to Vitti’s strange choice.
The district has plans to spend five million on TFA, and that doesn’t count salaries and benefits. What if we spent that five million on hiring new teachers instead, we could hire about 70 more, which would certainly help.
The district is required to keep 3% of its money in reserves but instead keeps seven percent, drop it to five percent and that would take care of the problem easily.
Then there is his talented teacher transfer initiative which if you haven’t picked up on it I believe is doomed to fail. Where I do think getting our best teachers to our struggling schools (re: don’t do well on standardized tests) is very important, I believe there are cheaper ways to do so than throwing money at them that would be a lot more successful. If we saved money there we could use that money on our class size issues.
We have other options than just willingly disregarding the law which at the same time hampers the one reform with evidence that says it works.
Finally, give me 5 more students and I will be a better teacher, said no teacher ever.