Dimond Sees Larger Class Sizes

      Class sizes this year at Dimond are bigger.

      It may seem unnecessary, but there is an understandable reason for this.

     Christian Caldarera, the curriculum principal at Dimond, said, “We lost teachers. We lose teachers, and why do we lose teachers? The enrollment goes down.”

      So quite simply the reason for the larger classes is that the enrollment went down and now we have fewer teachers. When you have fewer students, you need fewer teachers, and the other teachers have to absorb the students from the classes of the teachers who left.

           As an example Caldarera said, “Let’s say you have four fourth-grade teachers, and you go down to three. What does that mean?  Your class of 22 are now going to have to absorb the students from the teacher that’s now gone.”

Another concern may be how will this situation affect the students’ learning.

Caldarera said, “It will definitely affect how students learn.”

Caldarera said that teachers won’t be able to have as much one-on-one time with the students who need more help and that, “When it’s louder, it takes more classroom management to keep the kids focused. And even so much, too, kids are distracted by larger numbers. The kids are really going to need to take care of themselves because the teachers have to take care of so many more students.”

As for affecting the grades of students and the overall average grades in the school, Caldarera said, “I believe that it can. Will it? Not necessarily. Can it? For sure. It just depends on students adjusting to to the larger sizes as well as the teachers.

“The teachers are used to it, I mean it’s not the first time. A lot of these teachers have had 30- plus students in a class before.”

So far, it does not seem that much is being done to resolve this situation. However, there is not much that can be done.

Caldarera said, “We’re in this situation and we can’t get out of it, so we gotta make do with what we have and keep moving on. What we’re trying to do is see which teachers can assist in other areas. In other words, if I got a teacher certified in math, English and science, we might give them another section.”

Dimond Sophomore Ellie Wolff has not really noticed the bigger classes and does not think it is a problem.

Wolff said, “The only problem I have is space in the classrooms. In a large class things feel cramped especially when trying to move around.”

However, Dimond Sophomore Ellora Fisher has definitely noticed the bigger classes and that there are maybe 10 or more extra students.

Fisher said, “If there are more students in a class then teachers have a hard time getting classes started or quiet and if there are more students in a class then each student might not get enough one-on-one teacher-student time. If teachers have more students in a class then it can be stressful, and if it’s stressful for teachers then it can be stressful for students, and then there are a lot more papers to grade and it is just harder on teachers if there are more students in a class.”

Dimond Sophomore Zylynn Analoak, who went to Bartlett last year, said, “the classes at Dimond are a little smaller than they were at Bartlett.”

Clearly this is not a problem just at Dimond.

However, Analoak said, “Dimond definitely has a lot more students, but the classes at Bartlett are still a little bigger, not by much, though.”