I am curious how this process works - who decided which teachers get what students? Does the P also step in this process? There are teachers in DS's school who have a 'great' reputation - they are just better known than the others and when I subbed a few times in DS's school, they seemed really caring and gentle. DS is in 3rd grade now and he never gets these great teachers. He seems to get 'unknown' teachers. They are all ok in the end - DS is a fairly good student and very well-behaved and polite, so no trouble in the classroom. I wish just once he got a reputed teacher, just a feeling. No harm done at all if DS gets an unknown teacher but I just wish...This year he got a teacher who has a reputation for shouting and one mom said her son was in tears when he got the shouting teacher. I heard about her "shouting" from another mom also. Fortunately, this teacher seems nice so far to us. Last year we thought DS's 2nd grade teacher did not push him to his capability but this was again a vague feeling and DS was quite happy in 2nd grade. In first grade we thought the teacher seemed to favor certain kids but again just an impression for us and nothing concrete to complain about. (FYI: DS is hearing-impaired and when I asked his case manager if he could be put in a "reputed teacher" class, the manager said no, unless we had strong objections to the assigned teacher, they would not change his teacher.) Thanks so much for your views, thesub

It probably depends, but at my school teachers decide how to divide the students based on how well they work together, mixed abilties, etc. In addition, they look at the needs of the students. I was told that I got the most challenging students because I can work well with those students, as well as the students who do better with hands-on, because that's a lot of what I do.

I think that's a decent approach (assuming you agree with their assessment of your skills!). I know first-year teachers get what's given to them. Follow-up question (just curious): At what point do new teachers become involved in this process?

I teach 3rd grade and the way my team has done it is to randomly separate the kids. We then look at each pile to make sure there are an even number of low, middle, high achievers as well as a fair boy/girl ratio. My principal does not take part in the process unless there is a parent request.

My current school, there is only one class per grade, so every grade is together. At my previous school, the teachers would create the two groups based on behavior, ability, etc., but would not decide which teacher that class would have-admin did that.

We have two teachers per grade level. At the end of the year, they'll get the list of incoming students and put together their own classes, making sure to separate behavior problems, and balance the classes out as far as ability, behavior, and race so that things are even. I meet with the principal and tell her which classes I want my students to be in, based on which teacher I think they'll work best with. This may not be the teacher that's thought to be "the best" in that grade level- it totally depends on the student's personality vs. the teacher's personality and what that student needs. As far as I know, the gen ed teachers don't know that we do this, since some of them have commented that they put some student of mine in their class yet the student ended up in the other class (because I moved them). The principal might also make other changes if she doesn't agree or if we get new students that would throw those "balances" off.

This is pretty much what we do too. There are certain teachers who get certain groups, but it is tied to certain certifications - i.e. we group ESL kids in classes with an ESL certified teacher and group special needs students together so that class has an aide availiable to help thoses students. We don't really accept parent requests, but we do take them into consideration and even more so if they have a good reason.

At my school (and many others here-- possibly even the majority) the students are grouped by last name when they start at 3 years old (though the teachers do modify before the school year starts for gender balance and to evenly distribute the students who may not speak the language) and then stay with the same group through 6th grade. We only have two groups per grade level, but sometimes it would be a really good idea to do a remix given the differing personalities and needs of the students... Oh well.

Teachers sit down and make decisions about which classrooms to place the children in. Some groups of teachers do it with pile kids based on personalities, academic levels, and behaviors and others do it by teachers and how well they will work with the children as well as the personalities, academic levels, and behaviors.

We create balanced (as much as possible) classrooms. Teacher names are penciled in, but are always subject to change. Only on very rare occasions to we make conscious decisions to place a specific student with a specific teacher. Class placements are done first by ELL and Special Ed (we place our students), then by sending teachers, then Special Ed and ELL have another look. Admin oversees all decisions.

At my school, we have two teachers per grade level, and at the end of the school-year both teachers work together to divide their kids. So, new teachers automatically are involved in this process at the end of the school year. Again, this is just how it works at my school, and each school is different in the way they do this.

I taught 2nd grade at two different schools in the past. Here's how it worked: School A: We (the 2nd grade team) would meet and have 4-5 different lists (depending on the number of 3rd grade classrooms that would be available for the upcoming year). Each list had a teacher's name under it. Then, we'd place our students in classrooms based on which teacher we thought our students would work best in. I didn't really like this system because some teachers ended up with really good classes and others had really awful classes. Usually, the weaker teachers ended up with lower kids and behavior problems. School B: At the school I taught at last year, everything was completely random. We had four lists (Teachers A, B, C, & D). We tried our best to balance each class (equal numbers of highs, lows, behavioral issues, Resource kids, etc). Finally, after we handed our principal our four lists, he assigned a teacher to each list. I don't believe he made any changes to the classes. Now that I'm teaching middle school, I have no clue how we place our students for the upcoming year.

I'm at a high school and middle school combo building, but I also build the schedule for the school (I'm the tech guy). It's done randomly at schools of our size. There are just too many students to possibly sit down and actually coordinate who goes where. The computer takes care of it, and then we occasionally go in and bounce a few kids around as needed to balance numbers, or keep kids who want to kill each other out of the same room.

The current teachers divide the kids into their future homerooms. They usually divide according to behaviors for HR, trying to keep it as even as possible. Then we sit down as a team before the school year and divide for our content areas. We keep our special ed kids together for our push-ins but otherwise try to balance behaviors and abilities.

All incoming students are tested. Then we divide the kids up, high, medium & low. Even boy/girl ratio as possible. We do look at names & try to split similiar names. We also think about who needs to be seperated. This was the 1st year that I was able to request a teacher for my former students. This was because a new teacher has a special ed background. Otherwise, it's the luck of the draw.