Plan to reassign teachers raises class size concerns in MPS

Mar 22, 2016 by

More than 100 teachers could be reassigned, pushing up classroom sizes in some early grades at dozens of Milwaukee Public Schools next year as MPS phases out of the state’s soon-to-be-defunct class size reduction program known as SAGE.

MPS officials have stressed that the moves are intended to improve student achievement among low-income students in grades one through three, and firm estimates on reassignments or class sizes won’t be known until the district’s budget proposal in April.

The move is being driven by a change in state law, financial constraints and evaluations showing that SAGE has not achieved the desired gains in most grades.

“We don’t have the funding for class size reduction that we had in the past,” said Superintendent Darienne Driver, who quickly revised a plan that included the addition of 62 new administrative positions, in response to concerns raised by parents, teachers and board members.

Critics dispute the suggestion that small class sizes aren’t effective and said the move will push teachers and families to other schools.

“Class size is a huge determining factor for parents when they’re choosing a school, said Amy Mizialko, a veteran special education teacher and vice president of the Milwaukee Teachers’ Education Association.

“We want parents to walk into our schools and know we have adequate one-on-one academic and social-emotional attention,” Mizialko said.

Source: Plan to reassign teachers raises class size concerns in MPS

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