ONSLOW COUNTY, N.C. (WNCT) — School systems across the east are assessing the potential consequences if House Bill 13 isn’t passed.
The bill aims to take restrictions off of K-3 class sizes, and the requirement increasing the number of classes.
The Onslow County Board of Education passed a resolutionTuesday night asking lawmakers to support House Bill 13. Its schools are already at capacity and the bill could alleviate problems.
“Obviously we like smaller class sizes,” Superintendent Rick Stout said. “We aren’t arguing with the Senate. That’s a great idea to have but it’s the capacity needs of being able to do that.”
The school system will have to find additional K-3 teachers and an additional 139 classrooms if class size limits are reversed. Also impacted would be the art, music, and Spanish language rooms. Another option is adding mobile units as classrooms.
“That’s not the safest thing for our children in an open environment,” Stout said. “Plus, it could cost about $60,000 and about four months to set up one mobile unit.”
And teachers would even have to potentially double up in the larger rooms.
“Because we only have a limited number of spaces, if we take that and have to move people into the cafeteria into the gymnasiums or repurpose some of our rooms, it’s not a conducive environment for learning for the students,” BOE member Bob Williams said.
The school board also passed a resolution asking lawmakers to return control of the school calendar to the local level. Doing so will allow students to take end of the semester exams before the Christmas holiday.
The bill is currently in the Rules and Operations of the Senate Committee.