Fiske parents to air concerns with Wellesley School Committee over kindergarten doings

Parents/guardians of Fiske Elementary School students have been invited to meet at the school library at 8:45am on Friday with Wellesley School Committee members “to raise concerns and openly discuss a decision made by school leadership that was put into place in the Fiske Kindergarten classrooms this year that resulted in certain students remaining in school for four (4) stay days starting in December (vs. the Wellesley elementary school policy of four stay days starting at the end of April).”

We were contacted last week by a Fiske parent who wrote that “parents are outraged at the lack of transparency in this ordeal,” suggesting that one teacher was being let go after standing up to school administrators over the issue. The concern is that the decision cited above forced kindergarten teachers to handle extra students and resulted in children not benefiting from the additional attention small classroom sizes promise.

We asked Wellesley School Superintendent Bella Wong about the issue earlier this week and she responded that”Currently, four full stay days occurs for all Kindergarten students after April vacation. However, some students based on observation and their profile, with their parent permission, may be placed in full stay day earlier than other students in the Kindergarten class. While this is not the norm it is not uncommon. How this is communicated is guided by a need to protect student privacy and keeping the school community generally informed.”

Wong said she has received notes of concern regarding communications on the Fiske issue.

“This input has been taken into consideration and will help inform how we might want to communicate something like this in the future. Any decision to place students in full day earlier than April is done on a case by case evaluation so how communication would be managed would be based on that case.”

Wong says Fiske teachers were not asked to take on class sizes different that what’s typical across the district. “Under no circumstance was any teacher’s employment affected by this instance,” she says.

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