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April 3, 2014

Newfane plans for fewer class sections

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal —

NEWFANE — Seeing a downward trend in enrollment in current and upcoming years, Newfane School District plans to consolidate some classes for the 2014-2015 school year.

“We will certainly be tightening up in some areas to meet current financial challenges the district has incurred in recent years,” high school principal Thomas Stack said. Stack gave a presentation at Tuesday's board meeting on class size for he upcoming school year.

“The administrative team, superintendent and business officials have put together a plan we feel is reasonable and prudent to balance opportunities for our students while being fiscally responsible for our taxpayers,” Stack said.

The plan calls for four sections for kindergarten and fourth-grade classes for next year instead of the current five.

At the middle school level, there will be some reductions in sections depending on class size. Seventh-grade math, English language arts, science an social studies, Spanish, art, technology, home and careers, physical education, and health would decrease in section number (from five to three for math, from six to five for remaining subjects), while numbers of sections for fifth grade will increase in all subjects.

At the high school level, career and finance management (CFM) classes will be reduced from six to four sections, with an average of 17.75 students per section.

Algebra II/Trigonometry will be reduced from four sections to three, with an average of 22.3 students per section. Math IV will be reduced from three to two sections, with 23.5 students per section.

Living Environment and Chemistry will each lose a section while one section each will be added for Earth Science, environmental science, and college/AP environmental science.

No change is planned for English classes, gym, health, or social studies.

Joseph Najuch, president of the Newfane Teachers' Association, said he fears that fewer class sections will cause students difficulty when making their class schedules.

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