In what might have been the most ironic part of the nearly six hour school board meeting on Jan. 26, the school board once again discussed moving sixth graders to middle school. This time they did so breaking their promises to have a two year planning process to enable families to have time to plan for this transition. They discussed moving sixth graders throughout much of the district for the 2017-18 school year. Yes, that means this year's fifth ad sixth graders could be going to middle school next year. That means two of the three grades at middle school would be filled with new students.
If that isn't bad enough the board discussed cutting the social emotional supports for middle schools. Out of the billion dollar budget, the board is contemplating cutting $2 million for social emotional support. Yup that is right, no more social emotional supports just as they double the number and lower the age of those students. Even though one of their selling points of moving sixth graders to middle school is access to social emotion support services.
The Chief School Effectiveness Office also finally admitted there are critical downsides to having sixth graders in middle schools. Finally we heard that student achievement for sixth graders in middle schools is not likely to improve. Oh, and they want to spend $25 million to add capacity to middle schools while some like Bell, Manning and Summit Ridge will get temporary buildings to house these new students. Email the Jeffco school Board (firstname.lastname@example.org) and tell them to leave sixth graders in elementary schools.