Ok, my Open Enrollment drama continues. We got into Lemay. And then two days later, Encino called to say they were adding a new 1st grade class in the Fall... and would we still be interested? Of course, I said yes. ( I haven't turned in all of my enrollment papers at Lemay yet and must still sign the placement IEP by Friday.) Because it is such a small world, my son's current Kindergarten teacher told me she knows the teacher who is up for the job at Encino. Only, apparently, he was told it was a NEW K/1 Class! I figured out Encino is describing it as a full 1st grade to make it sound more appealing to parents. So, my question to all of you with more years in the system-- does this set-up work? I have no experience with two classes in one, in a general ed setting, with one teacher. If all else fails, I know I can go to Lemay for a traditional 1st grade. Any input would be helpful.
Talk to your kindergarten teacher and ask for her take on it. With all the talk of the ratio changing from 20:1 to a variety of different ratios (23:1 and 25:1 came up), our school site council representatives left me with the impression that the splits (K/1, 1/2, etc) are highly undesirable from a teaching perspective. Teachers have to explain two different sets of curriculum to two different groups of students. And the other group is expected to work quietly while the first group is getting directions.
Of course, the benefit is the more advanced younger children can sit in on the more challenging material. And the kids needing some remediation can hear both lessons. The trouble is with state standardized testing, each grade level is responsible for a particular group of material.
When a K/1 split was highly desirable for both groups was back before full day kinder. Even with 10 and 10, the kinders left at 11, leaving the teacher with 10 kids to privately instruct, allowing for some very individualized instruction.
Now that you've read all this, don't automatically rule it out. Sometimes adjustments are made with the amount of TAs or other resources available. You'll need to ask questions of the folks at Encino, to see what they'll be doing, especially since your son will have an IEP in place.
Thank you! Not yet, my baby is just 9 months old, but I am starting my magnet research early! I am glad this group is available to future LAUSD parents- so far all the questions/answers have been very informative. :)41667
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