To: County Superintendents
From: Dr. Steven L. Paine, State Superintendent of Schools
Date: March 25, 2008
Re: Superintendent Interpretation re: Pre-K Caseload
It has recently come to my attention that two West Virginia Board of Education policies contain a conflict regarding allowable student caseloads.
West Virginia Board of Education Policy 2525, West Virginia's Universal Access to Early Education System, allows only 30 students (15 a.m. and 15 p.m.) in classrooms which have no children with Individualized Education Programs (IEPs). This is stated in section 8.2, as follows:
WV Pre-K classrooms shall limit class size to no more than twenty children per classroom. Ratios shall be two staff: 20 children with one of the staff being a teacher. At naptime the allowable ratio is 1 staff member: 20 children. Caseloads for teachers of classrooms with children who have IEPs shall meet the requirements of WVBE Policy 2419. Teachers with no children who have IEPs shall not have more that 30 children for whom they are responsible.
This creates a discrepancy with West Virginia Board of Education Policy 2419, Regulations for the Education of Students with Exceptionalities, which currently permits 40 students per Pre-K classroom (20 a.m. and 20 p.m. with a recommended limit of 10 students with IEPs per session). See Policy 2419, Chapter 6, Page 83.
For the 2008-2009 school year, this discrepancy will be resolved in favor of the 40 student allowable caseload. All Pre-K classrooms will be permitted to have a maximum assignment of 40 students (20 students per session with a recommended limit of 10 students with IEPs in each session). During the 2008-2009 school year, the caseload requirements will be re-evaluated to determine whether the policies need to be permanently revised.
Any county which has been impacted by this interpretation will need to contact Clayton Burch, Coordinator, Extended and Early Learning, at 304-558-2696, for information about revision of its previously submitted collaborative plan.