Mixed Blessings: Split-grade Classes

Wondering what a split-grade means for your child?

Some readers may find it disturbing that when Gina Brak’s son, Jake, was entering grade three, she registered him in a combined senior kindergarten to grade-three class at the local public school. Voluntarily. The Belleville, Ont., mom figured it would boost Jake’s teamwork skills and independence if he shared a teacher with 26 other kids who’d celebrated anywhere from five to nine birthdays. “When I tell other parents about his class, they’re horrified,” she says. “They say, ‘How can he learn anything in there?!’”

But children in split-grade classes (also called combined or blended classrooms) do learn. And due to limited budgets and fluctuating enrolments, you’ll find these classrooms across the country. Research shows that compared to children in straight-grade classes, children in split-grades make the same gains academically — and do even better socially. Yet, some of us still regard them with the same enthusiasm as we do head lice.

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One Response to Mixed Blessings: Split-grade Classes

  1. Problem with the split class is that they force the upper grade students to learn independently. In case the teacher has misplaced a student in the split class, the student tend to get neglected…

    It also causes issues with ‘Who gets placed in the split class?’ Can parents object to it? Because parents are teachers at home too. They have a way to judge their children to see if the split class is really the right class for their child.

    My school had issue with split class because the parents were suspicious about how the school was placing the children into the different class. Some children who are quiet and really needs attendtion gets neglected and put into a split class. School claims they can work ‘independently’. however, it’s really not…

    Not a fair method.

    I think making different levels for each subject and placing childrent according to their ability by subject is much better solution. This way you are promoting better learning for children.

    Just placing ‘Indepent’ child into a split class is a poor solution to manage the budget..

    Govermet should think before they act on it.

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