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Parents weary of overcrowding at Sandalwood High School

5:34 PM, Sep 3, 2013   |    comments
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla.  -- Overcrowding in schools is a problem statewide. Shifts and adjustments in Duval County Public Schools are expected based on the 10-day enrollment count to help administrators iron out some kinks. Parents and students standing by waiting for change, are growing weary of the larger class sizes.

Like most moms, DiVina Pridham is constantly busy, getting things in order at home before rushing out the door and heading to work.
Things get hectic. But she still makes the time to take care of her eight children. Pridham is no stranger to maintaining order when dealing with larger groups. But what she says some teachers at Sandalwood High School are tackling, is hard to believe.

"My daughter actually feels like she can not do the work in the class because she can not hear," said Pridham.

In the auditorium at Sandalwood High School is where Pridham said her 11th grader is being taught financial algebra, side by side amongst more than 60 other students. In her son's world geography class, she said there are more than 50 kids.

"This is not a new issue," said Pridham. "It's not a new problem. But what are we doing about it?"

According to the Florida Department of Education, the maximum number of students in each core class for grades 9 through 12 is set at 25.

Financial Algebra does not fall under those guidelines, and Marsha Oliver with DCPS said there are two instructors in that particular class. Still, Pridham said that's not acceptable.

Oliver expects there will be classroom adjustments and hiring of additional staff after Tuesday when the district takes their 10-day enrollment count for the school year.

Two of Pridham's kids decided to enroll in the Florida Virtual School, because they were not satisfied with the level of education they were getting in the classroom.

It's an option some parents are turning to. 

First Coast News

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