Skip to main content
Elisa Batista's picture

Despite billions of dollars in stimulus funds pumped into school systems across the country, districts in urban and rural settings alike will open their doors this fall with as many as 45 students in class.

I have written about this before, but still, reading this story by the Associated Press left me with my jaw on the ground. Large school districts like Los Angeles have laid off as many as 2,000 teachers to close budget gaps. Kindergarten to third grade classes, which experts say are ideally small, will have more than 20 students for one teacher. Junior and senior high school classes will have more than 40.

From AP:

"Patti Hathorn, a fifth-grade teacher in rural Pinson, Ala., is expecting 29 or 30 students, making it the biggest class she's taught. Many of her students at Kermit Johnson Elementary are learning English or are in special education.

"'You may have a child that needs you, that needs that adult figure, to spend the extra five minutes with them. If you have five or six extra kids, that five minutes is gone,' Hathorn said.

"It's the same story in small communities such as Pinson and Wapakoneta, Ohio, and urban areas including Los Angeles and Broward County, Fla. In many places, classes will have well over 30 kids....

"There is no official data on class sizes for the upcoming year; many states and districts have not finalized their budgets. A survey this year by the American Association of School Administrators found that 44 percent of school districts expected to increase class size.

"Educators and parents worry the larger classes will keep kids from learning.

"'The issue is how this affects kids and what price this generation is going to have to pay,' said John White, principal of Mulholland Middle School in Los Angeles, where the district has laid off more than 2,000 teachers.

"Classes in Los Angeles are expected to grow by two kids in fourth through 12th grades. Middle school classes will have 35 kids on average; juniors and seniors will have about 43 kids in each class. Kindergarten through third-grade classes will rise by four kids to 24."

Are you expecting larger class sizes in your children's schools? What, if anything, can we do about this?

The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of strongly encourages our readers to post comments in response to blog posts. We value diversity of opinions and perspectives. Our goals for this space are to be educational, thought-provoking, and respectful. So we actively moderate comments and we reserve the right to edit or remove comments that undermine these goals. Thanks!