Tuesday, 14 September 2010 12:00 AM
Voice: the union for education professionals has welcomed the announcement on primary class sizes announced today (14 September 2010).
Senior Professional Officer (Scotland) Maureen Laing said "We accept the practicalities of not introducing the cap until 2011-12. "However, it is very important that the maximum will be made statutory as the approach across local authorities has been variable and has been shown to falter with legal challenges by parents. The maximum can only be enforced with a legal limit.
"We would now like to see further limits set. We see this as the start of an ongoing process. "It has been the long-held policy of this union that class sizes should be reduced by one pupil year on year. We believe that this should be progressive and would like to see this extended to P2 in 2012 and P3 in 2013 as the children move up the school.
"This approach has many merits in that it can be planned, the resource implications are reduced and it is a natural progression. "Voice would like to see P1-P3 have maximum class sizes of 25 by August 2013.
"Voice would also like to see a review undertaken of the size of composite classes. While many composite classes cover two age stages, in many rural schools the composite class may cover three or four age stages and if there are 25 children, this is quite an undertaking for the class teacher.
"We also believe that at least one place in each class should be kept unfilled at the start of the session to accommodate 'excepted pupils' as they appear. This needs to be made statutory as the present approach creates difficulties. "Voice believes that Gaelic medium immersion classes at P1-P3 and Gaelic medium composite classes should have a maximum of 18 pupils."
Contacts: Senior Professional Officer (Scotland) Maureen Laing (firstname.lastname@example.org) on 0131 320 8241 or