Does Class Size Relate to Student Achievement?
November 19, 2018
“Wow! I got all A’s and B’s this quarter!” Do you hear yourself saying this a lot? You can thank your class size for that. Class sizes can have both positive and negative effects on learning. First, smaller class outperform larger classes. Second, kids pay more attention since there are not as many distractions. Third, teachers don’t necessarily change their teaching strategies when teaching larger classes. The size of a person’s learning environment can have an unexpected impact on their education.
Smaller classes outperform students. For example,” There are less people walking around and making noises [in smaller classes].” said Daniel Schoenly, LMS student. Because of this many students end up achieving better grades in their classes. Sometimes it isn’t just the students that make the difference., “Teachers can be more focused a single person’s understanding since there are less people,” speculated Schoenly. Teachers can make huge differences in learning. According to www.districtadministration.com ,“Teachers believed they cover more content in greater depth and have fewer discipline problems with small classes…” Students and teachers perform much better in smaller classes because of less disturbances, fewer discipline problems, and they can cover more content because of all this.
Furthermore, students especially pay more attention since there are not many distractions. “Yes, I can pay more attention, because a lot of the time in larger classes, kids are yelling and causing all sorts of commotion,” said Hunter Calamari, LMS student. Unfortunately, this is the case in many classes.. According to www.districtadministration.com, “… The number of students that proves to be the most beneficial in research is 15.” Kids with around this number of classmates are most likely to do better in their classes. However, contradictory to this idea, the State of Florida law requires 22 students in core classes. And even more paradoxical, elective classes are allowed to have an unlimited amount of students.
On the other hand though, smaller classes aren’t always necessarily better. Sources state larger classes are much more cost-efficent as opposed to smaller ones. According to www.districtadministration.com, “Given that reducing class size alone is an expensive classroom intervention, districts must consider whether it is the most cost-effective way to invest funds (Whitehurst & Chingos, 2011).” Creating smaller classes would be an atrocious cost for the school board, since they would be the ones who would to fund the class size reduction. The questions is, “Are smaller class sizes worth the cost?”
Here at Landrum, we pride ourselves in the great education teachers and facuility provide for their students- and though smaller class sizes may improve the quality of students’ learning enviroments, the cost of class size reduction is very large. Whether this cause is worth the cost is an opinion that differs from person to person.
Written By: Jasraj Kaeley