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Board to seek state classroom size waivers

By Carolina Astrain
Sept. 17, 2013 at 4:17 a.m.


AWARDS AND RECOGNITION

The following groups will be recognized for their achievements at Thursday's board meeting:

• Employee of the Month Award - CORE PK Team

• You Make a Difference Award - Food Bank of the Golden Crescent

• iAttend Poster Contest District Winners

IF YOU GO

WHAT: Victoria school board regular monthly meeting

WHEN: 6 p.m. Thursday

WHERE: 102 Profit Drive

GIFTS TO BE APPROVED

The following gifts and donations were received by the school district. These are the gifts and donations listed in the agenda that were either $1,000 or more.

• $1,700 - H-E-Buddy Bags and Children Books for Minnow Camp Kick-Off, H-E-B, Federal Programs Department

• $1,500 - Textbooks for Early College Students, Karl E. "Ollie" Olson Foundation, Liberty Academy

• $1,000 - Operation Blessing Donation, Mary Jane and Gilberto Gonzalez, Mitchell Guidance Center

• $7,000 - Backpacks and supplies, Health Force Medical Staff Relief, Mitchell Guidance Center

• $4,000 - "Project U Turn" Donation, The League of United Latin American Citizens, Mitchell Guidance Center

• $7,600 - Head set, support braces, charter bus expenses and pre-game meals, Victoria East High School Football Booster Club, VEHS Football

The Victoria school district board of trustees will meet Thursday evening to discuss its application for classroom size waivers from the state.

The state requires public schools to keep their kindergarten through fourth-grade class sizes at a 22:1 student to teacher ratio.

If a district has classrooms exceeding that ratio, then the district is required to seek a waiver from the state.

As of last week, the school district had 65 classrooms at 14 campuses that exceeded the requirement.

Shields Elementary School and O'Connor Elementary School each have eight classrooms that are more than the state-mandated ratio - the highest across the district.

Last year, the district had 66 classrooms across 12 campuses that exceeded the requirement.

"We are making progress," said school board President Tami Keeling. "We're making sure we've got plenty of support in those areas where we've got to get a waiver."

The additional hiring of instructional coaches across the district will help alleviate the pressure on the classrooms in need of a waiver, said Keeling.

"We're adding additional layers of support," Keeling said.

In other business, administrators will present the board with an update on curriculum titled "Working on the Work."

"I cannot wait to hear it," Keeling said. "We've made the changes in curriculum; now, we're going to implement them."

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