Class Sizes

Department for Education written question – answered on 20th October 2014.

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Photo of Michael Dugher Michael Dugher Shadow Minister for the Cabinet Office

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many (a) primary and (b) secondary schools in (i) Barnsley East constituency, (ii) South Yorkshire and (iii) England had classes of (A) 31 to 35, (B) 36-39, (C) 40 to 49, (D) 50 to 59, (E) 60 to 69 and (F) more than 70 pupils in each of the last five years.

Photo of David Laws David Laws The Minister of State, Cabinet Office, The Minister for Schools

The available information on class sizes is shown in the table attached. To provide a more detailed breakdown of class sizes would incur disproportionate costs.

The latest published data on class sizes can be accessed at:

Legislation imposes a limit of 30 pupils per school teacher on infant classes. Regulations permit this limit to be exceeded in certain limited circumstances, for example, to admit the child of UK service personnel, or a looked after or previously looked after child, outside the normal admissions round. There is no statutory limit on class sizes for the junior and secondary phases of education. It is probable that some of the large class sizes reported above relate to times of day such as assembly when children were legitimately in groups of more than 30 and the Department for Education is working with schools and local authorities to better understand this.

Primary and secondary class sizes (Excel SpreadSheet, 24.22 KB)

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