Galway primary schools have most overcrowed classrooms in the countrySeptember 13, 2012 - 7:00am
More than 4,000 children in Galway are being taught in overcrowded classes of 30 primary pupils or more, startling figures reveal.
Teachers claim the worrying trend of ‘supersize’ classes – one in five primary pupils in Galway are in classes of 30 or more – will lead to increased literacy and numeracy problems for the county’s youngsters.
Galway’s class sizes are among the worst in the country, the official Department of Education and Skills statistics show.
Class sizes of twenty or less is the optimum number of pupils per class in line with best international practice but worryingly in Galway, 81% of primary school students in the city and county are in classes of 20 or more, with 19%, (4,040) in classes of more than 30.
The INTO (Irish National Teaching Organisation) says that in 2002, average class sizes in Ireland were 24.5, and successive Governments had pledged to reduce them in line with best practice to 20.
But INTO General Secretary, Sheila Nunan, said class sizes “are back to where they were a decade ago and are getting worse” because of funding cuts.
See full story in this week's Connacht Tribune.