Officials insist no rash decisions are being made about classes at Lumby’s high school.
Parents were provided with information Thursday about a middle years program proposed for Grades 7 and 8 at Charles Bloom Secondary School in 2016/17.
“We hope everyone understands that there’s a three to four-month process (to make a decision) and we want everyone to be heard,” said Joe Rogers, Vernon School District superintendent.
Grade 7 students have been at Bloom for a number of years but in fall 2015, a Grade 7/8 split class was created because of increased enrolment (there are also two Grade 7 classes).
With enrolment expected to jump to 64 students each in Grade 7 and Grade 8 this September, a possible option is to create five 7/8 split classes.
As part of the investigative process, other schools with multi-grade models are being visited.
“We’re looking at how a team of teachers work with kids and cross-curricular programs,” said Bryan Out, CBSS principal.
The team visiting schools consists of Out, the vice-principal, six teachers and three parents.
“We will present the information (to parents) and get feedback,” said Out.
Some parents have expressed concerns that there won’t be enough teachers to handle the Grade 7 and 8 enrolment.
But Rogers says extra staff can be brought on board if there is a need.
“Small schools need more resources to offer courses.”
Lumby’s mayor was in the audience at Thursday’s meeting.
“I’m impressed with the staff at Bloom and with the amount of work and creativity they are putting forward,” said Kevin Acton.
In terms of Grade 7/8 split classes, Acton says it’s not a perfect model.
“The solution is more funding. But for Bloom to have more, we’d have to take away from another school in the district and that’s not fair,” he said.