Revere to add new preschool section at Richfield Elementary

by Sheldon Ocker

Dec. 5 board of education work session

Director of Student Services Abby Kassel informed the Revere board of education that the district cannot accommodate all of its prospective preschool kids without adding a section next year.

“Our numbers are significantly growing, and the needs of our kids are growing,” Kassel said. “The number of kids we’re seeing with autism is significantly higher.”

Neither Kassel nor Superintendent Michael Tefs addressed the reason why Revere will have to add two new preschool classes in two years, though Tefs indicated that might be a topic at a future meeting.

“Our preschool program is growing quickly,” Tefs said, “a little bit faster than we might have anticipated.”

The district added a fifth preschool section this year, pushing enrollment to 71, 33 with special needs and 38 peers. Peers are “typical preschool kids,” Kassel said, who help those with educational disabilities adapt and thrive in an integrated classroom setting.

Ohio mandates that preschool classes cannot exceed 16 students (eight peers and eight kids with disabilities), one reason Revere’s five sections must be expanded.

At Revere, preschool is offered four days a week in 2 ½-hour sessions. Three sections are held in the morning and two are scheduled in the afternoon. The proposed sixth section will be conducted in the afternoon. All classes are held at Richfield Elementary.

No new teachers will be hired, because one morning section instructor will go from part-time to full-time by taking the new P.M. assignment. However, Revere will seek an additional teacher’s aide.

The cost of Revere’s preschool is $1,500 per year. Kids as young as 3 are eligible to be enrolled. The district accepts only students who live within Revere boundaries.

And what if there is a continuing influx of preschool kids? Last year 26 Revere preschoolers went on to attend Revere kindergarten. This year, of the 71 preschoolers, Kassell said 49 are planning to stay in the district for kindergarten.

“We are recommending only that we open a sixth section in January,” she said.

The board deferred action on the recommendation.

Eclipse of classes

At an earlier meeting, Tefs and the board discussed how the district should deal with the April 8, 2024, total eclipse of the sun, specifically whether to hold classes and use the event as a school learning experience or dispense with classes, partly because of logistical problems watching the eclipse from school.

“We’ve done our due diligence,” the superintendent told the board. “We talked to everybody. This may not be the recommendation everybody wants to see, but I believe we should close school that day.”

That would not necessarily shorten the school year by one day. Tefs can schedule April 8 as a professional development day (when there are no classes) instead of adhering to a professional development day currently scheduled.


Tefs attended the state Division II boys soccer finals, a game that Revere lost to Tippacanoe 2-0.

“In my 21-year career, it was the [best] highlight I’ve ever experienced,” he said. “In that stadium, the amount of support – both communities came out to support their kids. Revere was represented very, very well.” ∞