Labour would ‘guarantee’ a 30-pupil cap on primary classes

The TES is reporting that Jeremy Corbyn warns that teacher workload is causing too many to leave the profession and that primary class sizes should be kept to 30 or less.

“We need a guarantee of class sizes of 30 or less in primary schools,” he said. “There are a considerable number that are over 30, 31, some that are even bigger than that – up to 38, and that is completely wrong.”

Mr Corbyn said reducing class sizes would result in schools having to increase staff numbers.”Therefore, we need more teachers; above all, we need to retain more teachers,” he said. “Sadly too many leave the profession very early because they are over-burdened by workloads and pressure on them.”

The exisiting limit was imposed on infant classes following Ofsted research in 1995 which found that, weighing up the cost and benefits of reducing class sizes, it could only be justified for  younger children.

And there is little research evidence to show that the cost of limiting class sizes for older children would be justified. The Education Endowment Foundation says that reducing class sizes has “moderate impact for very high cost”. It adds that there are not particularly large or clear effects until the class size is reduced to under 20.

But it would be a popular policy with teachers, who, given the choice, are more likely to say they would have smaller classes than a pay rise, according to TES Global research published in May.

More at: Labour would ‘guarantee’ a 30-pupil cap on primary classes

Do you think keeping class sizes at a max of 30pupils would help reduce workload and therefore keep teachers, or do you think larger class sizes help solve the problem of a lack of teachers? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below or on Twitter. ~ Sophie

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Categories: Primary.


  1. andylutwyche

    SchoolsImprove How? There isn’t enough money and in some subjects/areas of the country, not enough teachers. This is a hollow promise

  2. andylutwyche

    bekblayton SchoolsImprove It’s like every political party’s manifesto in recent years: full of stuff they believe people want to hear

  3. TrainingToTeach

    bekblayton andylutwyche SchoolsImprove Thats if you believe it will work 100%, it won’t, but it would set in motion positive progress.

  4. bekblayton

    andylutwyche SchoolsImprove like any good improvement plan they need to work backwards – if that’s what labout wants let’s plan for it in

  5. bekblayton

    TrainingToTeach andylutwyche SchoolsImprove it won’t! If they even attempt to impose quotas and caps schools and teachers will suffer.

  6. andylutwyche

    bekblayton TrainingToTeach SchoolsImprove Maybe they will fine schools who can’t afford or find the staff to meet the 30 student limit…

  7. TrainingToTeach

    andylutwyche bekblayton SchoolsImprove Is there any evidence that is true? As that just seems to be a empty assumption, no?

  8. bekblayton

    TrainingToTeach andylutwyche SchoolsImprove yep. Ridiculous to suggest they can make it happen -like we wouldn’t be doing it if we could.

  9. andylutwyche

    TrainingToTeach bekblayton SchoolsImprove No evidence but how can they impose limit on class sizes? Can’t unless they fine or equivalent

  10. bekblayton

    andylutwyche TrainingToTeach SchoolsImprove they need a plan – an improvement plan if you will – not a sky in the pie policy-idea-thing.

  11. andylutwyche

    bekblayton TrainingToTeach SchoolsImprove It’s a soundbite, like everything MPs say. Even if they believe in it they can’t deliver it

  12. bekblayton

    andylutwyche TrainingToTeach SchoolsImprove It’s insulting! Treating the symptoms not the cause (if that’s the correct saying!)

  13. TrainingToTeach

    bekblayton andylutwyche Whats insulting is the way conservatives have treated education like a cash cow and degraded the profession.

  14. TrainingToTeach

    bekblayton andylutwyche The problem here is, no you cannot make all schools under 30, but you can’t think of it like that…

  15. TrainingToTeach

    bekblayton andylutwyche it also isn’t something that is an overnight fix. Things would have to be done to make it a reality.

  16. andylutwyche

    TrainingToTeach bekblayton I get what you’re saying & to aim for it is nice but to give impression it’s deliverable is naïve or dishonest

  17. TrainingToTeach

    andylutwyche bekblayton It isn’t deliverable in a short term plan and it isn’t deliverable for every school. But it is possible….

  18. TrainingToTeach

    andylutwyche bekblayton to make it happen for majority of schools, and its a positive step, if tories have their way classes will be 40+

  19. bekblayton

    TrainingToTeach andylutwyche this ‘manifesto’ will not combat what conservatives have done. They have no practicalities -just tired ideas.

  20. andylutwyche

    TrainingToTeach bekblayton With money (that isn’t being “promised”) and with a massive recruitment/retention drive (also not “promised”)

  21. andylutwyche

    TrainingToTeach bekblayton Research suggests that class size is not an issue regarding learning outcomes (“only” staff sanity suffers).

  22. bekblayton

    TrainingToTeach andylutwyche I don’t understand what Labour will do though, they are showing an ignorance of how education is suffering.

  23. andylutwyche

    TrainingToTeach bekblayton It’s a utopian ideal that neither has the money nor the personnel! Undeliverable in majority of schools

  24. andylutwyche

    bekblayton TrainingToTeach Labour seem to have sympathy for plight of edu but are no more informed than Cons regarding tackling issues

  25. bekblayton

    andylutwyche TrainingToTeach we need so much more. Workable assessment expectations, training and ITT support, equal funding.

  26. TrainingToTeach

    andylutwyche bekblayton Maybe, but the damage conservatives are doing needs to be stopped before it gets out of hand.

  27. andylutwyche

    TrainingToTeach bekblayton But politicians don’t know that and they make ALL the decisions. They hear what they want to hear

  28. bekblayton

    andylutwyche TrainingToTeach I’d like Labour to question events right now in Education. Concentrate on probing policy. You know, oppose.

  29. andylutwyche

    TrainingToTeach bekblayton It’s already out of hand, and baseless “promises” that sound nice will make no difference

  30. TrainingToTeach

    andylutwyche bekblayton Do you believe Corbyn and Labour would do more damage than *insert PM here* and Conservatives to education?

  31. andylutwyche

    TrainingToTeach bekblayton Impossible to say; what’s said in an election campaign and what’s done after it don’t marry up.

  32. andylutwyche

    bekblayton TrainingToTeach Whether they’re electable or not doesn’t escape the fact that politicians are woefully uninformed

  33. bekblayton

    TrainingToTeach andylutwyche Brexit was always going to be close. Think Labour will split – no opposition at the minute to Tories.

  34. TrainingToTeach

    andylutwyche bekblayton I’d say everything the tories have done to undermine teaching and destroy public schooling is a better example.

  35. TrainingToTeach

    bekblayton andylutwyche I’d rather hope for change, call me hopelessly optimistic but I cannot face 4+ years of this Tories path.

  36. andylutwyche

    TrainingToTeach bekblayton But all of it is driven by cherry-picking of information or wanting to win a vote (at any cost). No difference

  37. TrainingToTeach

    andylutwyche bekblayton I’m not staying if it continues down this path, I do have a choice fortunately, some don’t.

  38. bekblayton

    TrainingToTeach andylutwyche I understand that – but this is even more reason to offer proper, practical ideas and solutions.

  39. andylutwyche

    TrainingToTeach bekblayton Everyone has a choice of sorts, but I know what you mean. Many are exercising it hence the lack of personnel

  40. andylutwyche

    bekblayton TrainingToTeach No-one in Westminster seems to want to talk to people who do the job and may not 100% agree with their policies

  41. bekblayton

    andylutwyche TrainingToTeach I know, and labour could be really getting out there now, instead of this massive public meltdown.

  42. andylutwyche

    educationbear It’s sounds great, but there’s not the money nor the staff in some subjects or areas to do it. Undeliverable therefore

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