U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > New York > Westchester County
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
 
Old 02-06-2010, 08:11 PM
 
4 posts, read 17,693 times
Reputation: 12

Advertisements

Hi,
We currently live in Eastchester school district. I have 2 kids in the elementary school. They both have 22 kids in the classroom and 1 teacher. The principal said next year they may have to raise the classroom size to 27 children.
I am wondering how many children there are in the classrooms in other good school districts in Westchester, like Pleasantville, Rye City, Katonah, Edgemont, Chappaqua. I would appreciate it if anyone who lives in these neighborhoods can enlighten me, in case we need to move out of here. Thanks.
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message

 
Old 02-06-2010, 08:43 PM
 
395 posts, read 1,469,962 times
Reputation: 153
My daughter is in first grade in Pleasantville and she has 22 in her class also - 1 teacher and 1 assistant. I believe the other classes in the grade have 20 - 22 per.
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-07-2010, 11:34 AM
 
Location: Yorktown Heights NY
1,316 posts, read 4,779,477 times
Reputation: 435
Class size has repeatedly been shown to be a critical factor in the quality of the education and it should be one of the top criteria when selecting a school. Finding a list of elementary school class sizes is hard since most lists give you the the average across grades and Kindergarten is a lot smaller than the older grades.

I believe that most first to third grade classes in Croton, Katonah and other schools in the area are 20 to 22 kids. In Yorktown Central Schools, Kindergarten was 19 kids and first through third grade has been 20 to 21. However, like most districts there is a budget crisis brewing for next year. Yorktown is closing a school and will have 3 elementary schools (two K-3 schools and one 4-5) next year, with classes in K-3 staying at 20-21 kids and classes in 4-5 going up to 22-24 kids. I've heard that Croton is planning cuts that will create larger classes too, and have heard rumors about other districts as well.
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-07-2010, 02:28 PM
 
21 posts, read 89,512 times
Reputation: 15
Some considerations about class size:
  • Since most Westchester school districts are facing similar budget problems, I wouldn’t be surprised to see class sizes increase all over the county.
  • It is a myth that class size is a critical factor in student achievement. The one “definitive” study (STAR, conducted in the state of TN) has frequently been critiqued as scientifically unsound. In any case, that study showed minimal benefits when class sizes were reduced to 15, which is below what most local schools have in place now. I doubt many taxpayers would support paying for classes of that size because we would question whether any benefits (questionable that they are) would justify the cost.
  • IMO, assuming that class sizes will increase, the best thing my school could do to improve student achievement would be to institute flexible ability grouping, which is the modern version of the tracking that was used years ago. The current policy of grouping students together who range in ability from severely developmentally delayed to profoundly gifted in the same classroom and expecting a teacher to provide quality “differentiated” instruction to all of them is a fool’s errand. There is a growing body of evidence showing that ability grouping is an effective tool for increasing student achievement, and I hope our local schools move to that model.
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-07-2010, 02:32 PM
 
21 posts, read 89,512 times
Reputation: 15
For class sizes in Westchester schools:

Elementary School Report Card - Westchester Magazine - April 2008 - Westchester, NY
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-07-2010, 02:55 PM
 
Location: Yorktown Heights NY
1,316 posts, read 4,779,477 times
Reputation: 435
Quote:
Originally Posted by SunnyT4 View Post
Some considerations about class size:
  • Since most Westchester school districts are facing similar budget problems, I wouldn’t be surprised to see class sizes increase all over the county.
  • It is a myth that class size is a critical factor in student achievement. The one “definitive” study (STAR, conducted in the state of TN) has frequently been critiqued as scientifically unsound. In any case, that study showed minimal benefits when class sizes were reduced to 15, which is below what most local schools have in place now. I doubt many taxpayers would support paying for classes of that size because we would question whether any benefits (questionable that they are) would justify the cost.
  • IMO, assuming that class sizes will increase, the best thing my school could do to improve student achievement would be to institute flexible ability grouping, which is the modern version of the tracking that was used years ago. The current policy of grouping students together who range in ability from severely developmentally delayed to profoundly gifted in the same classroom and expecting a teacher to provide quality “differentiated” instruction to all of them is a fool’s errand. There is a growing body of evidence showing that ability grouping is an effective tool for increasing student achievement, and I hope our local schools move to that model.
There is a large body of research that shows that smaller class size has a huge impact on the quality of the education that students receive. Far more important than what studies show, ask any teacher. The importance of small class sizes is one of the only things that most educators actually agree on. Anyone who has taught can attest to the fact that teaching 20 children is a far more difficult task than teaching 25.

No schools in Westchester that I know of have "severely developmentally delayed" students in the regular ed class. Those students are in specific special education classes. And many schools have small-group differentiated instruction, in which students within the larger class are grouped by ability level for specific periods of instruction. Small group differentiated instruction has also been shown to be highly effective in improving students' ability to learn the curriculum and is certainly not " a fool's errand."
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-07-2010, 09:36 PM
 
124 posts, read 638,752 times
Reputation: 41
27??!! that's awful! My kid's class started as 20 kids then increased to 22. And I am not happy with that. I don't know how many kids other classes have. SunnyT4, I totally support the ability grouping (isn't ossining already done that?). How do I know when the schools decide to raise the students number per class? We want to avoid those school district for our house hunt. If all of them follow suit, we'll go for CT.
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-08-2010, 09:29 AM
 
374 posts, read 946,631 times
Reputation: 125
Quote:
Originally Posted by SunnyT4 View Post
Some considerations about class size:
  • It is a myth that class size is a critical factor in student achievement. The one “definitive” study (STAR, conducted in the state of TN) has frequently been critiqued as scientifically unsound. In any case, that study showed minimal benefits when class sizes were reduced to 15, which is below what most local schools have in place now. I doubt many taxpayers would support paying for classes of that size because we would question whether any benefits (questionable that they are) would justify the cost.
I doubt this is a Myth. It makes perfect sense. I would look at management studies. The ones that show that a manager can only effectively manage a small number of people. There is a lot of literature on that since it improves business profits which apparently are more important than education for our kids.

So I doubt anyone is questioning the benefits of small class sizes. But unfortunately they definitely don't want to pay for it.
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-08-2010, 12:19 PM
 
21 posts, read 89,512 times
Reputation: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by dma1250 View Post
There is a large body of research that shows that smaller class size has a huge impact on the quality of the education that students receive. Far more important than what studies show, ask any teacher. The importance of small class sizes is one of the only things that most educators actually agree on. Anyone who has taught can attest to the fact that teaching 20 children is a far more difficult task than teaching 25.

No schools in Westchester that I know of have "severely developmentally delayed" students in the regular ed class. Those students are in specific special education classes. And many schools have small-group differentiated instruction, in which students within the larger class are grouped by ability level for specific periods of instruction. Small group differentiated instruction has also been shown to be highly effective in improving students' ability to learn the curriculum and is certainly not " a fool's errand."
It would be helpful to readers if you would cite any references to that “large body of research” that supports your claims. I am skeptical after years of hearing educators use the phrase “research has shown” to defend practices based on flimsy or nonexistent evidence. As I previously wrote, the STAR research that found only minimal benefits for class sizes of 15 students has been found to be flawed and its findings have been contradicted by other studies, notably one by Hoxby that found no statistically significant effect of class size on student achievement.

As for what teachers think, I have heard some candidly admit that differentiated instruction is impractical. In our school severely developmentally delayed students, as well as other less disabled, are routinely placed in regular ed classes. This common practice, known as “inclusion”, has been encouraged by legal requirements that special ed students be educated in the “least restrictive environment”.

For small group instruction, many educators prefer mixed-ability groups, where “peer learning” is supposed to occur. In fact, that often means the faster learners are supposed to help teach the slower learners, and it’s just not what I want for my children.

The bottom line is that the concept of mixed ability, small classes promoted by the educational establishment is inefficient, costly and, most important, does not improve academic achievement. It does, however, create more jobs for teachers and could be just one example of how pouring more money into education has not correlated with better outcomes.
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-08-2010, 12:21 PM
 
21 posts, read 89,512 times
Reputation: 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by sdcity View Post
I doubt this is a Myth. It makes perfect sense. I would look at management studies. The ones that show that a manager can only effectively manage a small number of people. There is a lot of literature on that since it improves business profits which apparently are more important than education for our kids.

So I doubt anyone is questioning the benefits of small class sizes. But unfortunately they definitely don't want to pay for it.
I’ve seen plenty of people questioning the benefits of small class sizes. And they are unhappy about paying outrageous tax rates for these types of educational practices that are unsupported by sound evidence. If having small classes make some people feel better about their schools, then so be it. However, as a taxpayer and a parent, I try to point out the flaws in their thinking.
Rate this post positively Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


 
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > New York > Westchester County
Similar Threads

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2021, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top