Lenoir Co. Schools prepare for upcoming class cuts

KINSTON, N.C. (WNCT) – The 2017-2018 school year is set to kick off in just a few weeks and school leaders for Lenoir County are already planning for the 2018-2019 school year.

The 2018-2019 school year will be the first year Lenoir County schools reduce the number of students in classes.

“The average district size is eliminated,” said Patrick Holmes, the school system’s public information officer. “What we’re going to need to do is work with individuals classes rather than district averages.”

Lower elementary classes will see the biggest changes.

Kindergarten classes will go from a maximum of 23 students to a maximum of 18 students.

1st graders will go from 23 students to a maximum of 16 students.

2nd and 3rd graders will go from a 23 student maximum to a 17 student maximum.

The changes come after lawmakers designed a budget making cuts to class sizes.

Frances Herriog is the Associate Superintendent for Lenoir County schools and says the cuts will have a large impact on the school system.

“We aren’t 100 percent certain, but we’re looking at close to 9 million dollars worth of adjustments,” said Herriog. “We are going to have a few schools that are not going to have enough classrooms size.”

Herriog says one of the big challenges is space.

“We need additional teachers and we may have to create additional classrooms,” said Herriog.

Despite the change, Holmes says the school districts focus is on the students.

“If we need a teacher we’re going to hire a teacher, if we need a classroom, we’re going to find a classroom,” said Holmes.

The 2017-2018 school year will begin on August 28, 2017.

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