Hargrove off the mark on class size

May 26, 2015

What’s Rep. Mark Hargrove’s response to voters who expect him to honor the state’s new class-size standards? Half-truths: “class size peaked around 1940, and has been decreasing ever since.” 

While class sizes did peak in the 40s, the sad fact is that class sizes for most Washington students have increased sharply in recent years.

In a one-day special session in 2010, the legislature increased K-4 class sizes. And in 2012, state lawmakers eliminated the Student Achievement Fund which paid for smaller class sizes in grades K-12.  

Though lawmakers established a goal five years ago of K-3 class size averages of 17 students, the only actual relief came in 2013 when high-poverty K-1 average class sizes were reduced to 21 students. (See graph below.)

Hargrove's comments came came in reply as thousands of voters continue to contact their legislators in support of Washington’s new class size law. In just the past ten days, 1800 individual voters have sent 5300 emails to lawmakers using this messages by clicking this link.

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