News in Brief
Class-Size Waivers Triple for Texas Districts
State figures show a more than threefold increase in just one year in the number of elementary schools allowed to exceed class-size limits in Texas, one of the most visible signs of the big education funding cuts that the legislature passed to balance the budget, a newspaper reports.
Figures obtained by The Dallas Morning News show that state officials allowed cash-strapped public school districts to exceed the 22-student limit in 6,988 classrooms from kindergarten through 4th grade, up from 2,238 a year ago.
"We are clearly seeing the impact of the budget cuts this year," said Debbie Ratcliffe, a spokeswoman for the Texas Education Agency, which approved the vast majority of class-size waivers sought. "School districts can save some money in the short term by increasing their class sizes, and that is what many have felt compelled to do."
Vol. 31, Issue 13, Page 4