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May 19, 2014

uear Chancellor larlna:
We have learned LhaL aL a recenL 1own hall meeLlng ln 8rooklyn, you responded Lo Lhe concern
expressed by a parenL by saylng LhaL 30 sLudenLs per class ln 3
rd
grade and up were ºnoL
ouLrageous." Whlle we undersLand LhaL Lhese class slzes are lncreaslngly common ln clLy classrooms,
we belleve Lhls ls unaccepLable and musL change.
Smaller classes are Lhe number one prlorlLy of parenLs ln uCL surveys every year. ?eL every year slnce
Lhe survey has been glven, class slzes have lncreased and ln Lhe early grades are now Lhe largesL ln 13
years. ln Lhe resL of Lhe sLaLe ouLslde n?C class slzes average 20 Lo 22 sLudenLs ln all grades, and yeL
our sLudenLs wlLh a far hlgher average need level are expecLed Lo achleve Lhe same sLandards, wlLh class
slzes as much as 30 percenL larger ln many schools.
ln Lhe Campalgn for llscal LqulLy case, Lhe sLaLe's hlghesL courL concluded LhaL based on research, n?C
sLudenLs had been denled Lhelr consLlLuLlonal rlghL for a sound baslc educaLlon ln large parL as a resulL
of excesslve class slzes. ln !uly 2003, when you were SuperlnLendenL of ulsLrlcL 13, you served on a
panel of educaLors called Lhe Þrofesslonal !udgmenL Þanel commlssloned by ClL. 1hls panel called for
class slzes of no more Lhan 14-17 sLudenLs per class ln elemenLary schools, 23 sLudenLs per class ln
mlddle schools, and 18-29 sLudenLs ln hlgh schools, dependlng on Lhe poverLy level of Lhe school.
ln respondlng Lo a survey, n?C prlnclpals sald classes should be no larger Lhan 20 ln grades k-3, no
larger Lhan 23 ln grades 4-3, and no larger Lhan 24 ln all oLher grades ln order Lo provlde a quallLy
educaLlon.
ln 2007, a new sLaLe law called Lhe ConLracLs for Lxcellence (C4L) was passed ln response Lo Lhe ClL
declslon, requlrlng n?C Lo reduce class slze ln all grades, and Lhe clLy submlLLed a class slze reducLlon
plan LhaL was approved by Lhe sLaLe. 1he clLy's C4L plan called for Lhe clLy Lo lower class slzes Lo an
average of no more Lhan 20 sLudenLs per class ln grades k-3, 23 sLudenLs per class ln grades 4-8 and 23
ln core hlgh school classes over flve years. ?eL raLher Lhan adhere Lo Lhls plan, Lhe prevlous
admlnlsLraLlon allowed class slzes Lo reach levels Lhe n? Supreme CourL found Lo be unconsLlLuLlonal,
and our sLudenLs are sufferlng as a resulL.
Mayor de 8laslo campalgned on a promlse LhaL he would commlL Lo achlevlng speclflc class slze
reducLlon goals by Lhe end of flrsL Lerm and lf necessary, ralse revenue Lo fund Lhls. Pe also pledged
LhaL he would comply wlLh Lhe plan Lhe clLy submlLLed ln 2007, calllng for class slze reducLlon ln all
grades. We hope LhaL you wlll follow-up wlLh Lhese promlses.
Accordlng Lo Lhe sLaLe's schedule, dlsLrlcLs are mandaLed Lo publlclze Lhelr proposed 2014-13 C4L plan
and recelve publlc commenLs sLarLlng !une 16. 8efore LhaL daLe, Lhey are supposed Lo consulL wlLh
parenLs/guardlans, Leachers, and admlnlsLraLors.
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ln order Lo fulflll Lhe mayor's promlses and Lhe needs of our chlldren, we urge you Lo puL forward
aggresslve yeL reasonable annual LargeLs for class slze reducLlon, dedlcaLe a slgnlflcanL share of Lhe $644
mllllon ln Lhe clLy's C4L funds speclflcally Lowards achlevlng Lhose goals and provlde sufflclenL overslghL
Lo see LhaL schools use Lhese funds approprlaLely. none of Lhese acLlons occurred ln Lhe prevlous
admlnlsLraLlon.
ln addlLlon, we urge you Lo lmmedlaLely re-lnsLall Lhe early grade class slze funds LhaL Lhe uCL
ellmlnaLed ln 2010, and resLore class slze llmlLs of 28 ln grades 1-3 LhaL were ellmlnaLed ln 2011.
llnally, !"# %#& '()')*#+ ,-.# /#0( 10'-!02 '20% 34*! 5# *-6%-,-10%!2/ #7'0%+#+! because as presenLly
consLlLuLed lL lncludes lnsufflclenL seaLs Lo allevlaLe currenL school overcrowdlng, no less reduce class
slze and/or address pro[ecLed enrollmenL growLh.
We hope LhaL you wlll heed Lhe declslon of Lhe sLaLe's hlghesL courL, llsLen Lo parenLs, educaLors, and
whaL research shows, and follow Lhrough wlLh Lhe mayor's promlses Lo n?C voLers by reduclng class
slze. Cur chlldren deserve Lhelr rlghL Lo a quallLy educaLlon and Lhls should sLarL now.
Slncerely,

Leonle Palmson, LxecuLlve ulrecLor, Class Slze MaLLers
Llsa uonlan, ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 1* and member, 8lue 8ook Lask force
Shlno 1anlkawa, ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 2* and member, 8lue 8ook Lask force
Mlrlam ArlsLy-larer, ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 6* and member, uCL School
Space Worklng Croup
8ryan u'CLLavl, ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 8
Marvln ShelLon, ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 10*
llka 8lo, ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 12
1esa Wllson, ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 14*
nalla 8osarlo, ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 13
Lrlca Þerez, ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 19
Laurle Wlndsor, ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 20
1eresa Arboleda, ÞresldenL, ClLywlde Councll on Lngllsh Language Learners*
!ohn LnglerL, ÞresldenL, ClLywlde Councll on Speclal LducaLlon
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ueborah Þerklns, ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlonal Councll ulsLrlcL 22
Melanle Mendonca, ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 23
lsaac Carmlgnanl, co-ÞresldenL, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 30* and member, 8lue 8ook Lask
force & uCL School Space Worklng Croup
Shenell u. Lvans, Þh.u., SecreLary, CommunlLy LducaLlonal Councll ulsLrlcL 6
Lduardo Pernandez, Þh.u., 1reasurer, CommunlLy LducaLlonal Councll ulsLrlcL 8

Adam Wllson, vlce ÞresldenL CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 13
uebble lelner Mu, member, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 14*
Llena 8omero, 8ecordlng SecreLary, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 13
ueborah Alexander, member, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 30
1amara 8owe, secreLary, CommunlLy LducaLlon Councll ulsLrlcL 2
Andy Lachman, ÞarenL Leaders of Lhe upper LasL Slde
!"#$% #' ()*+,%#)'- . ()* #/0'%#(#1,%#)' 23*2)$0$ )'"45

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