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Board Wants More Class-Size Reduction

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The Fullerton school board this week passed a resolution declaring its intent to expand its class-size reduction program.

The resolution affirms a previous action in which the school board committed to reducing kindergarten and second-grade classes to 20 or fewer pupils in the coming school year. First-grade classes have already been reduced.

Through the resolution, the district is applying for funds from the state to pay for the program.

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In addition, the district is providing extra funds to help kindergarten classes cope. Because of an early morning and a midmorning start time for kindergartners, there usually are 66 children in one classroom at the same time for about 30 minutes a day.

Elementary schools across the district are figuring out ways to reduce the number of pupils to 20 or fewer for each teacher.

In other business, district trustees began reviewing the seventh- and eighth-grade health curriculum. Besides health maintenance, nutrition and exercise, the curriculum also advocates sexual abstinence.

Board President Anthony M. Valla said he would prefer that such topics as birth control, abortion and adoption be included as well.

“We have finally come of age in the city of Fullerton and accepted that teenagers are sexually active,” he said. “I think our teenagers are very sexually active, and I’d like to see some discussion on the ramifications of birth control and teen pregnancies. . . . Abstinence is a very good idea. I just don’t think it’s realistic.”

Other trustees said they would not be willing to change the curriculum without strong support from parents.

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