Elementary school sees increase in enrollment

Clintonville School Board approves hiring another teacher

Grace Kirchner Leader Correspondent

The staff at Rexford-Longfellow Elementary School received a unexpected surprise this week when they found an increase of 16 students enrolling in the fourth grade.

This has resulted in the Clintonville School Board agreeing to hire an additional fourth grade teacher.

Information provided by Superintendent Dr. David Dyb on Monday showed there were two fourth-grade classes projected at 25 students each and two other classes taught by special education teacher Al Soldner that would have 21 and 19 students.

“The biggest issue with fourth grade is our co-taught classes are 21 and 19,” said Tom Burkhalter, Rexford-Longfellow principal.

Pam Skokan, a fourth-grade teacher, said she was concerned about the class sizes. She favored hiring another teacher now and not trying to figure it out later in the school year.

“I think at this juncture, it might be easier to find a quality fourth grade teacher than it is to try to figure out how you place any type of paraprofessional to help in the classrooms knowing our limited pool in that particular area,” Dyb said, pointing out that the extra students also provides additional revenue.

Dyb agreed that he didn’t want to be adding a teacher in October. He said he would immediately go back and look at previous applicants and get it posted. He said he actually was excited about seeing the increase in students.

“When you run out of packets on registration day, that’s really exciting news. We were not anticipating that,” Dyb said.

“I hope this increase becomes a trend. Now we have 16 additional students. Let’s say right now we have some businesses expanding, some want to expand, and maybe this becomes a pattern. I hope it’s a trend,” board president Ben Huber said.