Class sizes drop

The class size average for Grades 1 to 3 is 20.6, the second lowest in six years

There appears to be progress on class sizes in the North Okanagan-Shuswap School District.

The class size average for Grades 1 to 3 is 20.6, the second lowest in six years while the number of secondary classes in excess of 30 students is the lowest in five years.

“The reduction of class size averages and the number of secondary classes in excess of 30 are mainly due to the district’s increased ability to strategically deploy staff given the flexibility allowed in not having to meet decreed district averages,” said superintendent Dave Witt.

“The $788,000 Learning Improvement Fund has also been a factor as some of the funds were used to add divisions at middle and secondary schools.”

Kindergarten class size is slightly higher than previous years (19.2).

“This is partly due to the elimination of the need for a district average but also coincidental with the demographics of cohorts in the district’s smaller schools,” said Witt.

At the secondary level, there are 97 classes with more than three special needs students with individual education plans. There are 24 middle school classes with more than three students with IEPs and 20 at the elementary level.

“Principals continue to advocate for more support for students with special needs and the director of student services provides this when available,” said Witt.

“The district works with teachers and administrators to direct available resources to the schools and classes in most critical need of support.”