Parental concerns prompt Moline School District to draw up new proposal

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MOLINE -- Parents in the Lincoln-Irving and Willard Elementary School areas will hear a proposal from the district that they hope will decrease classroom sizes while offering a dual language program to both students Thursday, February 2, 2017.

The week before the Moline Coal-Valley School District introduced an idea to keep kindergarten through third graders at Lincoln-Irving while having 4th and 5th graders in Willard and implementing the dual language program for both schools.

English Language Learner Program Director, Stephanee Jordan says parents spoke out against the idea, saying it would be a tough transition for kids to make, especially if they had no prior experience with a second-language. There was also an issue of transportation for the students who wanted to opt out of the program but remain in the Moline Coal-Valley School District.

The proposal would have also taken away a section of the dual language program, making the program itself smaller.

"We did want to acknowledge concerns of the parents which was having their kids have a transition at 4th grade
(with no prior knowledge to a second language), also we had much concern from the community that they did not want to decrease a section of dual," says Jordan.

Now parents will hear a new proposal that will keep kindergarten through fifth grade classes at both schools, parents will just have the option of sending their kids to Lincoln-Irving, taking advantage of the dual language program or attending Willard Elementary School with a traditional, single language classroom setting.

"By doing this instead of trying to send kids to wherever we have openings in the district those that are in this neighborhood now we’ll just say your home school is Willard and we’ll staff Willard accordingly," says Superintendent Lanty McGuire.

Parents will get a full presentation, breaking down the proposal during the special meeting Thursday, February 2, 2017 from 6 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. at Lincoln-Irving Elementary School.