Parliamentary Replies

August 01, 2017

Class sizes

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Mr Leon Perera, Non-Constituency Member of Parliament

Question

To ask the Minister for Education (Schools) (a) for primary and secondary schools, what is the current median and mean number of students in a class as defined by the grouping of students headed by a form teacher; and (b) what is the median and mean class size for remedial classes across primary and secondary schools respectively.

Response

1. In 2016, the average form class size in primary and secondary schools is 33 and 34 respectively. The median form class size in primary and secondary schools is 32 and 36 respectively. MOE does not track the size of remedial classes in primary and secondary schools.

2. MOE provides schools with resources based on student and programme needs. Schools have the flexibility to deploy teachers in a targeted manner so that learning is more effective. Hence, even though form class sizes have generally remained above 30 across the levels, schools group students into smaller teaching class sizes based on learning needs or programme considerations. For instance, levelling up programmes such as the Learning Support Programme for lower primary students are conducted in pull-out classes of 8 to 10, while the School-based Dyslexia Remediation programme is conducted in classes of 4 to 6 students. At secondary level, coursework subjects requiring closer teacher supervision like Design and Technology are conducted in classes of 20. Due to subject-based banding and the desire to offer a range of elective subjects to students, it is common to have teaching class sizes below 40.