HR1148 LRB094 20200 RAS 58034 r


2     WHEREAS, Numerous studies performed in other states have
3 shown evidence demonstrating that reducing class size,
4 particularly for younger children, will have a positive effect
5 on student achievement overall and an especially significant
6 impact on the education of lower income children; and
7     WHEREAS, A landmark Tennessee class-size study, called
8 STAR, shows that students who had been placed in small classes
9 in grades K through 3 continue to outperform others right
10 through high school, with higher graduation rates, higher grade
11 point averages, and a greater likelihood to be college-bound;
12 and
13     WHEREAS, The Tennessee study also shows that smaller
14 classes are more cost effective, citing evidence that fewer
15 students, particularly low income students, must be held back
16 in higher grade levels and teachers can identify children more
17 easily with special learning problems allowing them to provide
18 effective help in the classroom without making an unnecessary
19 and often costly referral to special education services; and
20     WHEREAS, Studies in Wisconsin, Tennessee, and California
21 have shown that smaller classes allow teachers to focus more on
22 instruction and less on classroom discipline; and
23     WHEREAS, More than thirty states have moved toward reducing
24 class size, including Illinois, which enacted P.A. 93-814 to
25 establish the State's K-3 Class Size Reduction grant program to
26 provide schools on the Early Academic Warning List or the
27 Academic Watch List grants to defray the costs and expenses of
28 operating and maintaining classes in grades kindergarten
29 through 3rd grade with an average class size within a specific
30 grade of no more than 20 pupils; and



HR1148 - 2 - LRB094 20200 RAS 58034 r

1     WHEREAS, Illinois has been unable to fully implement its
2 class size reduction program since no funds have ever been
3 appropriated for this program; and
4     WHEREAS, Although evidence in other states suggests that
5 such a program might prove beneficial to students in Illinois,
6 no study has ever been performed in Illinois to reveal the true
7 need for a class size reduction program; therefore, be it
10 we urge the State Board of Education to measure the need for
11 providing State assistance to school districts to reduce class
12 sizes in grades K through 3 to no more than 20 students; and be
13 it further
14     RESOLVED, That the State Board should survey school
15 districts and determine how many classrooms would require
16 funding to reduce class sizes in grades K through 3 to no more
17 than 20 students; and be it further
18     RESOLVED, That the State Board should further determine
19 potential total costs associated with reducing class sizes in
20 grades K through 3 in all school districts, including the costs
21 of hiring additional teachers and staff and providing
22 additional physical classroom space; and be it further
23     RESOLVED, That the State Board should report to the
24 Governor and the General Assembly on its findings no later than
25 December 31, 2006; and be it further
26     RESOLVED, That a suitable copy of this resolution be
27 delivered to the State Board of Education.