6th-Graders: Where Do They Belong? Two Board Members in Duval Want Elementary School Extended

By Palka, Mary Kelli | The Florida Times Union, February 21, 2009 | Go to article overview

6th-Graders: Where Do They Belong? Two Board Members in Duval Want Elementary School Extended


Palka, Mary Kelli, The Florida Times Union


Byline: MARY KELLI PALKA

When children hit the sixth grade, their worlds start to change.

It's partially the hormones, when they physically and emotionally grow. Plus, there's a change in the dynamics in their family and in their relationships with their parents as they start to become more independent.

And in Duval County, as with most of the state of Florida, it's when children switch from the comfort of their elementary schools to the larger, more mature middle-school setting.

That's too soon, Duval County School Board members Stan Jordan and W.C. Gentry say.

Jordan and Gentry want the school district to consider expanding at least some elementary schools to serve sixth-graders and put off by a year their transition to middle school. The proposal brings up the question of whether sixth-graders are better off in elementary or middle schools.

There's no clear evidence that supports one argument over the other.

Gentry brought up the idea at this month's board meeting, hoping to better utilize elementary schools that are below capacity rather than close them. He and Jordan also hope keeping sixth-graders in elementary school could help deal with discipline issues in the first year of middle school. They have just begun researching information to see if the statistics support their claim.

During the 2006-07 school year, 169 fifth-graders were held back in Duval County. The next year, as sixth-graders, 617 were retained.

Violations of the student code of conduct took an even bigger jump: There were about 3,200 for fifth-graders in 2006-07 and almost 26,000 when they were sixth-graders the next year, according to Jordan's figures.

But other board members think a new school, not a new grade, is the problem. And delaying that transition would just put off the problem for another year.

Board member Vicki Drake said having sixth grade in the middle school is a benefit because students can take more advanced classes, such as Algebra I.

Board vice chairwoman Brenda Priestly Jackson said the district just formed K-8 schools a few years ago, and it needs to fully implement that concept before starting another model. She thinks the focus needs to be more on helping children transition from one school to another.

Superintendent Ed Pratt-Dannals said that although moving sixth-graders to elementary schools may make better use of those schools, it would just transfer the problem of under-utilized schools to the middle schools.

Gentry was out of town for the last workshop. But he told the Times-Union he would still like to discuss the sixth-grade issue in March with the rest of the board.

Only four counties in Florida have most of their sixth-graders in elementary schools. The only one in Northeast Florida is Clay County, which moved its sixth-graders from middle schools to elementary schools in the late 1980s, said Sharon Chapman, the assistant superintendent for instruction.

Chapman said the move had nothing to do with discipline or retention issues. Instead, she said the move was mostly to alleviate overcrowding in middle schools. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

6th-Graders: Where Do They Belong? Two Board Members in Duval Want Elementary School Extended
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

    Already a member? Log in now.