More classrooms and teachers have been added in B.C. for the current school year. (Black Press files)

Class sizes down, special needs up, BCTF says

A third of B.C. school districts don’t have class composition rules

The number of B.C. public school classrooms with more than 30 students has declined this year, with the addition of more than 3,500 teachers to meet the terms of last year’s court decision restoring limits to the teacher’s union contract.

But the number of classes with four or more students identified as having special needs is up slightly over the last school year.

The B.C. Teachers’ Federation used the education ministry’s statistics to check progress. They show that the number of classes with 30 or more students dropped by 45 per cent, from 1,385 to 757 compared to the last school year. The B.C. government’s increase in funding added an additional 4,300 more classrooms to the system.

The number of classrooms with four children with special needs rose just under one per cent, to 17,466 classes. But because of the additional classes, the percentage dealing with four or more special needs students is lower. The number of classes with seven or more special needs students fell by 17 per cent.

“Class composition is more complex because of differences in local collective agreement language as well as district student assessment and staffing processes,” said BCTF president Glen Hansman. “For example, about a third of our local teachers’ associations don’t have any class composition language.”

On class sizes, from last school year to the current one, the average Kindergarten class size declined from 19.1 to 17.8 students. Similar decreases were recorded in the later grades, about one fewer student per class across the board.

Just Posted

B.C. chiefs show solidarity with Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs

Chiefs from around B.C. outside the Coastal GasLink pipeline route in Smithers show support.

December windstorms led to record ferry cancellations

Baileys for breakfast? It may not be what the doctor ordered, but… Continue reading

RCMP to review actions at Wet’suwet’en pipeline protest camps

Senior Mountie says he hopes protests will be peaceful following deal with hereditary chiefs

On the Wing: Christmas Bird Count #4 — Skidegate Inlet

By Margo Hearne The marine forecast read “winds northwest 15 to 25… Continue reading

Haida Gwaii mountain biking gets in gear

The frost was gone, but the iced puddles on Mac Blo Road… Continue reading

B.C. chiefs show solidarity with Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs

Chiefs from around B.C. outside the Coastal GasLink pipeline route in Smithers show support.

B.C. chief says they didn’t give up rights for gas pipeline to be built

Hereditary chief: no elected band council or Crown authority has jurisdiction over Wet’suwet’en land

Condo rental bans may be on way out with B.C. empty home tax

Many exemptions to tax, but annual declarations required

UPDATE: B.C. boy, aunt missing for three days

The pair are missing from Kamloops

Daredevil changes game plan to jump broken White Rock pier

Brooke Colby tells council daredevil event would help boost waterfront business

Liberal bows out of byelection after singling out Jagmeet Singh’s race

Karen Wang says she made comments online that referenced Singh’s cultural background

Truck hauling compressed gas for ‘virtual pipeline’ crashes on B.C. highway

Driver charged and highway closed for nine hours - containers did not rupture

Canucks rookie Elias Pettersson ‘feeling good’ after knee injury

Pettersson said he wasn’t feeling any pain during Wednesday’s skate

Most Read