The process used to assign students is a comprehensive one. As a staff, we take the responsibility of class placement very seriously. Beginning in the spring, and continuing through the summer, many factors are considered in the process of placing every child. This includes adjustments necessary in the summer to incorporate new students.
Grades 1 through 5
The objective of the process is to produce the most “workable” heterogeneous combination of student groups. This important task contributes significantly to the creation of a positive class environment that enables students to reach their potential. It has been my experience that nearly all children are able to adjust rapidly to the different teachers they have over the years.This, too, is an important skill to learn--learning to get along with and work with a variety of people.
In most cases, yearly changes in enrollment will produce the need for one or more combination class. Rest assured that the staff gives careful consideration to the students they feel would function well in a multi-age classroom. In combination classrooms, students are selected who are independent and confident workers, learn well in a cooperative environment, and have average to above average learning skills without behavior, social or academic concerns. It should be noted that elementary classroom teachers are certified to teach grades kindergarten through six. This range of ability was most notably applied during the early days of the one-room school. It should also be pointed out that regardless of grade level assignment, children in a given classroom perform at varying levels. In other words, the designation of “third grade” does not mean that all children in that classroom perform at the “third grade level” in all subjects. Therein lies the need to consider the individual differences among students. Stated another way, grade levels are not “pure” but are groups of students whose only common denominators may be chronological age and uninterrupted progression through the system.