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Arbogast’s student-to-teacher ratio breakdown questionable

South Kitsap Education Association Immediate Past President Judy Arbogast sent an email Thursday to local media members comparing how South Kitsap High School’s classroom counts compare with others in the state.

She compiled a chart to illustrate the differences, but did not mention the school year the data was obtained. Arbogast claims the data is the latest from OSPI and is also posted on the SKEA website at weteachsouthkitsap.wordpress.com/.

The figures could be questionable, according to the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction data.

Arbogast sent out data she claimed from the OSPI. She listed the data from School Apportionment and Financial Services’ District Allocation of State Resources, certificated data from OSPI Report S-275 and enrollment data from CEDARS as reported by individual districts.

District Allocation of State Resources reported in 2011-12 (updated in March), SKHS's enrollment was 2,226 students with 63 teachers, not including librarians, teaching assistants, counselors and school administrators.

SKHS — the largest high school in the state and the lone high school in the district — is a Class 4A school. School classifications are determined by enrollment by the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association.

Arbogast’s report shows that SKHS is ranked last — among seven schools listed in Kitsap County — with its 35 students per teacher ratio. The chart showed Bremerton (2A) with 34 students to a teacher.

Her list of Kitsap County high schools included Gig Harbor (4A) and Peninsula (3A) high schools. Both high schools, which are in the Peninsula School District, are located in Pierce County.

Arbogast did not include enrollment data from three public Kitsap County high schools — Kingston, Klahowya and Bainbridge.

But according to the OSPI "Compare My School" report (http://reportcard.ospi.k12.wa.us/), SKHS and North Kitsap have 20-to-1 students per teacher ratio, Olympic is 19-to-1, Bremerton is 16-to-1 and Central Kitsap is 13-to-1.

OSPI reported there are 16 schools with 2,000 enrollment or more. Quillayute Valley (Insight Online) of Fork has 2,069 students has a 26-to-1 ratio. Three schools, Wenatchee (2,177) Kamiak (2,118) and Moses Lake (2,149) has a 22-to-1 ratio.

In her chart of comprehensive high schools, Arbogast provided data from nine other high schools with a student-per-teacher ratio of 35 students or less.

According to Arbogast’s data of the 10 schools, SKHS is ranked 10th with a 35-to-1 ratio compared to high schools in the Bellingham (Bellingham, Sehome and Squalicum — all 2A), Snohomish, Mead (Mt. Spokane and Mead) and Olympia (Olympia and Capital) school districts.

She reported Mt. Spokane (3A) and Mead (4A) are ranked first and second with 25 and 27 students per teacher. Glacier Peak (3A) and Snohomish (4A) are above SKHS — ranked eighth and ninth with 33 students per teacher. Both schools are in the Snohomish School District.

OSPI reported Glacier Peak and Snohomish at a 22-to-1 ratio, Olympia at 20-to-1, Capital, Mead and Mt. Spokane at 19-to-1, while Bellingham, Sehome and Squalicum at 16-to-1.

In her chart of comprehensive high schools in districts — Puyallup, Clover Park and Richland — with a significant federal workforce, Arbogast's chart ranked SKHS last among eight high schools.

Hanford (2A) has a 29 student-to-teacher ratio and was ranked first on Arbogast’s chart, while Puyallup High School (4A) was ranked seventh with 33.3 students per teacher.

OSPI reported a 22-to-1 ratio for Handford and an 18-to-1 ratio for Puyallup High School.

Three of those schools are in Puyallup, two each are in the Clover Park and Richland school districts. Of the eight schools, four schools are Class 4A, three are 3A and one is 2A.

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