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Extra teachers to target secondary class sizes

Extra teachers to target secondary class sizes

The allocation of additional staff for schools in 2006 is being directed at reducing secondary class sizes Education Minister Trevor Mallard announced today.

“The 2005 Budget included an additional investment of $91.3 million over four years to provide an extra 421 teachers to secondary and area schools,” Trevor Mallard said. "The extra teachers will be provided to schools from the beginning of the 2006 school year and are over and above those required for roll growth.

“This extra staffing brings the total provided since 2001 to about 3,040 full-time teacher equivalents (FTTEs), at a total annual cost of $173 million,” Trevor Mallard said.

“The extra 421 teachers will be allocated to secondary and area schools to reduce the teacher:student ratios in Years 9 and 10 [forms 3 and 4] from 1:25 to 1:23.5. They will also provide extra base management staffing, and reduce the Maximum Average Class Size (MACS) to 25.

"Since the Review Group met, substantial extra funding has been provided to schools through the decile-weighted components of operational funding,” Trevor Mallard said. "Because of this extra decile based resourcing, I have decided that a majority of the extra 421 teachers will be allocated to years 9 and 10 to reduce class sizes across all deciles. This will replace the decile-weighted component originally recommended by the School Staffing Review Group.

"The government has decided to bring the implementation forward to help alleviate workload pressures that have been revealed in the recent survey of secondary teachers work.

"Although the staffing is allocated as specific staffing components, school boards have the flexibility to use it as they see fit to improve the learning outcomes of their particular students."

“A range of teacher supply initiatives, including scholarships, are in place to ensure that teachers will be available to fill the extra positions,” Trevor Mallard said.

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