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I keep hearing the school board would like to save money by increasing the student-teacher ratio by one or two students. Class sizes aren’t going to change much without moving students around by closing schools. How will this save the school district money without closing schools?

A higher student-teacher ratio saves money because the district would need fewer teaching positions across the district. Frank Harwood, the district’s chief operating officer, said a higher ratio would affect elementary schools and grade levels differently depending on how many students they have. For example, a school with four sixth-grade classes would only have three larger classes. District leaders say closing one school would mostly save money because it eliminates the need for nonteaching positions — a principal, counselor, secretary, nurse, custodian, etc. Some teaching positions would move to other schools with students, and the district would cut some because it would have room in other schools for the students.

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