HB 2928 VOTE:NO
Signed into Law
Establishes Task Force on Class Sizes to determine appropriate class sizes of students, identify methods to reduce class sizes and determine cost for methods to reduce class sizes.
Although it’s a widely held belief that students suffer when class size is large, there is very good national and international data showing this not to be true. As with increasing school funding, decreasing class size does not correlate strongly with better outcomes. Reducing class size will, most definitely, increase costs. It is unlikely that the board will come to this conclusion given the make up of the board – 7 teachers or bargaining unit representatives out of the 11 members. Teachers stand to benefit from smaller classes. Also, the charge to the board “identify methods to reduce class sizes and determine cost for methods to reduce class sizes” illustrates that smaller classes are the objective. This bill and subsequent legislation is likely to lead to inefficient and ineffective measures.
Although this is just a board to study the issue of class size, recommendations of such boards frequently lead to legislation. Oregon schools are already being managed too centrally. This board is likely to make recommendations that will lead to statewide principles or mandates. Local schools should determine how they want to configure their staffing. Not the State.