LANSING, Mich. — The Lansing School District has plans to move their seventh and eighth graders from the high schools, and superintendent Ben Shuldiner hopes the change will benefit students both academically and socially.
“I’m really happy to announce that organically, over the next two to three years, we’ll be pulling the seventh and eighth graders out of the high schools,” Shuldiner said.
In order for this to happen, the district has decided to convert four fourth through sixth grade schools into fourth through eighth grade schools and the two kindergarten through sixth grade schools into kindergarten through eighth grade schools.
“So all of these schools that stop at sixth grade will be able to have a seventh grade next year, and then an eighth grade the year after that,” Shuldiner said.
This year, about 50 percent of seventh graders will be moving from the high school, and the district hopes, in the next three years, all seventh and eighth graders will be moved. Then, all three Lansing School District high schools will only consist of ninth through 12th grade students.
“High school is really different. It’s not just about the age of the student, it’s the way classes are run, it’s the way programming is run, and now that we can have a pure ninth through 12th grade high school, it gives teachers an opportunity to focus on a more targeted curriculum,” Shuldiner said.
The change comes not even three months after voters supported a $130 million bond to rebuild Lewton School, Mt. Hope STEAM Magnet School, Sheridan Road STEM Magnet School and Willow Elementary.
"We’re going to be able to make sure that those schools are rebuilt to rebuild seventh and eighth graders,” Shuldiner said.
Lansing School District’s first day of school is Aug. 29.