February 22, 2024

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Hallowell-area fifth grade classes to return to elementary school building in fall

4 min read
Hallowell-area fifth grade classes to return to elementary school building in fall

HALLOWELL — Fifth grade courses will not be element of Hall-Dale Middle University up coming yr soon after dad and mom complained the students are getting socially excluded and prematurely uncovered to teenage conduct.

Starting in the fall, quality 5 students — this means this year’s fourth graders — will keep on being at Corridor-Dale Elementary University. This year’s fifth graders will keep on being at the middle school, which ordinarily has involved grades six to 8.

Administrators originally moved the fifth grade learners to a wing in the middle college for the 2021-22 educational yr and informed people that it would be a non permanent remedy to make house for social distancing for the duration of the pandemic.

Now that the district has returned to a feeling of normalcy, a number of parents have requested the Regional School Device 2 board of administrators at new conferences why those students are nevertheless at the middle university constructing.

In a unanimous vote Feb. 2, the board agreed to move the fifth graders again for the 2023-24 university yr with no dialogue.

Board Chair Donna Seppy reported she gained various emails from parents about the topic. 

Their arguments involved that the 10- and 11-year-olds have been “too young” to be exposed to center university and significant school learners. Hall-Dale Higher School shares a building with Corridor-Dale Center University, which, at 111 Maple St. in Farmingdale, is about 3 miles absent from the elementary faculty at 26 Backyard Lane in Hallowell. 

One particular mother or father, Sarah Lutte, claimed through the general public comment time period at the Dec. 1 board assembly that the fifth graders were being remaining out of middle university actions, particularly, the faculty dance. At very first, the fifth graders were being invited to the center school dance, she said, but following officers ended up questioned whether or not there would be a chaperone for the 10-year-previous pupils, the fifth graders were being disinvited. 

“The experience as a result of the previous two several years, lodging they want have not been fulfilled, the fifth grade is not provided, there is a further dance coming up and the fifth grade is not invited. How does my fifth grader come to feel when they are not integrated?” Lutte mentioned.

Lutte spoke yet again at Thursday’s assembly, introducing that “all parents are on the similar side” and that “everyone feels the similar way” about shifting the pupils. She stated all dad and mom who were being surveyed by the faculty preferred to have the fifth graders in the elementary university and that “all but two people” responded.

An additional mother or father, Hilary Roberts, spoke at the board conference about how her daughter read communicate about material use and social media these as TikTok that she did not want her 10-year-aged exposed to. She also reported her daughter instructed her some fifth grade college students sit on your own at lunch simply because “there was a spot for (them) at the elementary college but not at the middle faculty.”

Interim Superintendent Rick Amero called it a “burning issue” that he has attempted to determine out with Assistant Superintendent and previous Principal of Corridor-Dale Elementary Faculty, Kristie Clark, in the course of the a few months he has led the district. 

Collectively, they surveyed and spoke with mothers and fathers and academics about how they felt. 

“Through all those distinctive ranges of comments, it turned obvious to satisfy the requirements of learners the two academically and emotionally,” Amero said at the Feb. 2 board meeting. “We strongly advocate for the fifth graders to go to the elementary school.” 

By retaining this year’s fourth graders at the elementary faculty in the tumble, the inhabitants is expected to be about 350, relying on the dimension of the incoming kindergarten class. 

Amero claimed shifting the pupils back again will issue into the future spending budget procedure as Regional University Unit 2 prepares for up coming yr.  

Though uncommon in the increased Augusta place, getting fifth graders in a center university constructing is not unheard of in Kennebec County. In Oakland-based mostly Regional School Device 18, fifth by means of eighth graders attend China Center Faculty, even though the China Most important College is restricted to pre-K through fourth grade. Somewhere else in central Maine, the elementary schools in Somerville-primarily based Regional University Device 12 are hooked up to a middle faculty, but many other community districts have middle schools possibly as standalone structures or connected to a significant faculty.

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