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NC Senate Unveils Proposal To Spread Class-Size Reduction Over Two Years

Cedar Fork Elementary in Wake County would have to add three more kindergarten classrooms under the class-size change scheduled to go into effect in the fall.
Jess Clark
/
WUNC
Republican lawmakers say they have a compromise to reduce elementary class sizes while addressing concerns from local school districts.

Republican lawmakers say they have a compromise to reduce elementary class sizes while addressing concerns from local school districts.The Senate unveiled a proposal Monday night that would spread the implementation of new maximum class sizes over two years.

Last year, legislators voted to lower maximum class sizes in kindergarten through third grade from 24 to between 19 and 21 students.

Related: State Senate Tangles With School Districts Over K-3 Class Sizes

However, school groups and district leaders said that requirement could lead to thousands of teacher layoffs in art, physical education and music. Advocates called for a fix; hundreds demonstrated at the legislature last week.

Republicans said the measure represents a compromise and preserves a longstanding goal to reduce class size. Some Democrats say this plan still doesn’t address a funding gap, and simply delays the concerns until next year.

Jeff Tiberii is the co-host of WUNC's "Due South." Jeff joined WUNC in 2011. During his 20 years in public radio, he was Morning Edition Host at WFDD and WUNC’s Greensboro Bureau Chief and later, the Capitol Bureau Chief. Jeff has covered state and federal politics, produced the radio documentary “Right Turn,” launched a podcast, and was named North Carolina Radio Reporter of the Year four times.
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