Many upset over mixed-grade level proposal

WAKE COUNTY Some say it's the result of overcrowding and some say poor planning.

"We are seriously considering moving and if we can't do that considering the market, we're considering either home schooling or taking our kids to private school," parent Rob Galvin said.

About 329 K-3rd grade classrooms in Wake County are over the 24 student limit mandated by state law.

In the past, the school system got waivers from the state for the overages, but this year the state said no more. So the district is scrambling to comply.

"Principals are having to look classroom by classroom, how many students do we have, how many teachers do I haven and re-configuring classes to meet that state mandate," said Michael Evans with Wake County Public School System.

That includes putting kids from different grades in the same classroom at the same time and the thought has some parents up in arms.

"We're going back to a place we were 100 years ago," parent Silvia Delarosa said. "It felt a little bit like the mixed classroom in The Little House on the Prairie. And I would understand that if we were in a community far away, but this is Wake County. This is the capitol of North Carolina."

The district isn't happy either. They blame the state for not being flexible in the face of a tight budget and a growing population.

"It's very disruptive for families, it's disruptive for teachers and students," Evans said. "We don't want to do it, but in this case we're required to."

The state puts it back on Wake County schools telling ABC11 Eyewitness News, "the class size waiver request option is designed for districts struggling with very specific circumstances and should not be routinely employed as a strategy across a school district."

The state says they only received 23 other classroom waiver requests from districts statewide, compared to more than 300 from Wake County alone.

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