Following is a list of candidates and their statements regarding grouping.
Note that based on party representation laws and the current balance of the board of education (BOE), at most one Democrat can win. So either 2 or 3 Republicans and 1 or 0 Democrats will be elected.
Polly Rauh (Dem) - Endorsed
- Favors instructional grouping / re-grouping for skill areas, and heterogeneous grouping in other parts of the day. -10/14 and 10/15
- "Nothing is so unequal as equal treatment of unequals" - 10/14
- "The superintendent works for the BOE... the BOE is not a rubber stamp." -10/15
- Over 30 years in the Stamford Schools including teacher, media specialist, principal (Roxbury and Northeast), coordinator of staff development, curriculum & instruction. Authored the Westover program.
- Donate to Polly Rauh
- Polly Rauh campaign brochure
Jerry Pia (Rep) - Endorsed
- "I've been a proponent of ability grouping for 30 years and that's not going to change now." -10/13
- "The saddest thing in the world is when someone doesn't learn."
- We can't evaluate the new program in 5 weeks, and the evaluation can't be by the same people who put it into place.
- Debates by the board need to be out in the open
- It maybe time to do citywide magnets
- Regarding "college prep" classes - "not everyone should go to college" / "some kids are better served by going to a vocational school so they can get a good job after high school"
- Extensive experience with the school system including 18 years on the BOE from 1980 - 1998.
- Donate to Pia/Olson
- Pia/Olson campaign brochure
Lorraine Olson (Rep) - Endorsed
- Statement made via email on 10/16 and approved for posting: "I feel that we do need some type of change but we are rushing as usual. The program at Scofield is wonderful and very successful but is very controlled. It is a magnet program with very different resources available to it than the district schools. The teachers there have been teaching this method since the beginning of the program so it works. I am concerned that we are moving too fast at the district middle schools. The teachers do not have enough training to teach all of the diverse learning abilities together. I feel that reducing the 6th grade to two group is moving too fast. I do not think we have committed enough resources, time or staff development to move as fast as we are moving. We must assess the program more and consider more of the variables in a non magnet setting before we pursue such dramatic programs citywide."
- Donate to Pia/Olson - print form and mail with check, write "Keep Grouping" on the check!
- Pia/Olson campaign brochure
Naomi Chapman-Taylor (Dem)
- "We're trying to get to heterogeneous classrooms" -10/15 Westover forum
- "I'm not for grouping, the 1 the 2 the 3 the 4" - 10/15
- "Students with lower levels achieve less in lower classes than they do in mixed classes. High achievers are easy to teach and favored by the teachers. It's not the way to go in the new economy. We must put them all in the same classroom. I'm not for any type of ability grouping." -10/15
- Advocate: "On Wednesday, Republican Fred Pierre-Louis and Democrat Naomi Chapman-Taylor gave their full support to grouping children of mixed abilities together for academic classes." -10/14 Advocate article
- Advocate: "'I support it as being the first step as we move toward heterogeneous classrooms,' she said of middle school reforms."
Fred Pierre-Louis (Rep)
- Following Naomi and regarding Naomi's comments on grouping: "I second that opinion" based on his experience studying 20 children who were placed into college prep classes who he feels attained higher
- Advocate: "On Wednesday, Republican Fred Pierre-Louis and Democrat Naomi Chapman-Taylor gave their full support to grouping children of mixed abilities together for academic classes." -10/14
- Advocate: "'I do support it 100 percent. I am not surprised for some people, for some candidates to embrace ability grouping because of their political ambitions,' Pierre-Louis said." -10/14
> See our endorsements
Paid for by Stamford Residents for Excellence in Education, Nicole Zussman, Treasurer.