Paterson parents, students protest school district’s ‘right-sizing’ policy to address teacher shortage

The parents say they are skeptical of the program and worry about overcrowding in the classrooms.

Chris Keating

Feb 9, 2024, 5:35 PM

Updated 161 days ago


A group of parents and their children gathered to demonstrate outside of the Paterson Board of Education building on Friday. They were there in protest of a new policy adopted by the district known as “right-sizing.”
District officials say right sizing is a necessary response to a teacher shortage in Paterson, one that would see some teachers and staff transferring to other schools plus the implementation of larger class sizes. It’s also being done to ensure there’s a certified teacher in each classroom, officials say.
But some parents are skeptical. They say they are worried about overcrowding in classrooms.
Jessica Quevedo has two children in the district - one at STEAM High School and another at Public School 26. She says she fears relationships are being broken up between teachers, students and parents.
“The district did not consult with parents. This was a sneaky move,” Quevedo says.
She says the vice principal at P.S. 26 was the only Spanish-speaking administrator. But that vice principal was recently moved to another school, leaving non-English speaking parents in a lurch.
“There are parents over there who can’t communicate. They go to pick up their kids and have no idea what’s going on there’s no one to talk with us,” Quevedo says.
The teacher shortage is an issue schools all across the country are dealing with. News 12 is told that there are 100 openings for teachers in the Paterson School District.

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