3,500 Classes With Too Many Students

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The first full week of school in the 2011-12 begins today. Here's what was in the news over the weekend:

The New York Post reports that seven city schools have been added to the state's list of "persistently dangerous" schools, meaning that for the last two years they have had six or more "serious incidents" for every 100 students they enroll. Of the 19 schools on that list, nine are in the city, a decrease from last year when 12 of 16 were city schools. Two schools — Middle School 332 and Junior High School 13, both in Manhattan — were also on the list last year. Schools have to wait two years before petitioning to be removed and, in the meantime, under No Child Left Behind, their students can transfer to other schools.

The newly added schools:

Aspire Preparatory Middle School, the Bronx
Soundview Academy for Culture and Scholarship, the Bronx
Public School 11 Highbridge, the Bronx
Intermediate School 190, the Bronx
Middle School for Academic and Social Excellence, Brooklyn
P.S. 12, Brooklyn
P.S. 194 Countee Cullen, Manhattan

The Daily News reported over the weekend that the city's teachers union says its members have already recorded 3,500 classes that are over the contractual limits for middle and high schools.

"People who screamed for austerity — now you're going to see what it looks like," Michael Mulgrew, president of the United Federation of Teachers, the teachers' union, told the paper. "Now you're going to see how it affects children and schools."

Upstate: After Tropical Storm Irene washed away large sections of roads in Vermont, students in one town are hiking a half-mile forest trail to get to school.

For more on what was in the news this weekend, Gotham Schools' Rise & Shine post provides a fuller roundup.

Around town Monday:

At 10 a.m., students and faculty at William McKinley I.S. 259 in Brooklyn will hold a ceremony to honor the victims of 9/11. Meriam Lobel, curator at the Tribute WTC Visitor Center, will be present, as well as Sharon Dunn from the New-York Historical Society. I.S. 259 is known for its ever-growing mural. This year its theme is 9/11, and Ms. Lobel and others will be visiting through the year to help.

At 11:30 a.m., Chancellor Dennis M. Walcott will visit Excellence Boys Charter School of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn.

District 18, 23, and 31's community education councils are meeting Monday night. A full calendar of meeting times and dates can be found here.

Finally, the Learning Network question for students follows Nicholas Kristof's column in the Sunday opinion section: How Much Time Do You Spend in Nature?