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Middle School Changes for CRCSD

CEDAR RAPIDS, IA (CBS 2/FOX 28)  -- Valerie Dolezal says the district has some tough questions heading into 2014.

What are some ways we can make some budget cuts and still maintain our goals of not cutting programs to kids? she asks.

The answer - changes for both students and teachers at area middle schools. Dolezal says teachers will be losing a planning period.

Decreasing the amount of prep time that we have at middle school from two periods a day to one, she says.

Students on the other hand are gaining a period. All middle schools across the board will be going to 8 periods, with the school day staying the same length.

This eight period day will allow us for more opportunity for support for students that are struggling, or for students that want to have enrichment, Dolezal says.

As for how it will affect staff, she says its early. Anything from transfers to terminations are possible, but they're trying to avoid either option.

We do not want to have people lose their jobs, Dolezal says. That will be our ultimate goal and we'll work with staff and we'll work with buildings to see what we can do.

Some parents we spoke to off camera were unsure of how the changes would play out. Others, like grandparent Mary Zander, were fairly optimistic.

It'll be the same amount of time in school, maybe there will be some staff  shifting around, but I think for the students its a great idea Zander says, as she waited for her grandson outside of Harding Middle.

Some students are happy they'll get more chances to raise their hand.

I think its a smart idea so it gives students a chance to finally choose a class they want to take, and not just have a set schedule, Harding 7th grader Luke Schaeffer says.

The district says in addition to helping with the budget, the extra period for students will also help them implement their plans for foreign language classes over the next few years.
 
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