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Sunday, September 20, 2009

Large Classes, Crowded Schools

When I was growing up, in the middle of the previous century, in a brand-new, post World War Two area filled with young families of two or three kids, baby-boomers, I could understand why our schools were crowded.  It was was also no surprise that by the time they built another elementary school to relieve the pressure on my PS 46, Bayside, NY, there weren't enough kids to fill it.  Even PS 46 was pretty empty.

The high school I would have gone to, if we hadn't moved out of the city, was full the minute it opened to students.  Actually that first year, when it only had the Tenth Grade was the only year it wasn't over-crowded.  As I remember hearing, the second year with two grades, it was on double session and the third year with three grades, it went on triple session.

I had always thought that as the area aged the school would empty and became a normal school with just one session.  Then I got this article by a teacher who works in Francis Lewis High School.  Apparently, today, almost fifty years after the school opened it is much, much more crowded than ever.

I don't know how the parents don't protest.  How can anyone learn, teach or work in such an enironment?


Risa Tzohar said...

Another thing we have in common. We both didn't go to Francis Lewis High School. I was supposed to go there but my mother went up to the school and asked the secretary what they could do to help me not have classes on Friday afternoon in the winter. The secretary went into the principal and they called Jamaica High which didn't have a third session (till the year after) and transferred me.
We made it through with 39-40 kids in a class. Some teachers were better than others in dealing with it.

Batya said...

Wow, did we really grow up that close....?
Did you know Debbie from Jamaica HS?