On March 10, the ATA News published an infographic entitled “Who Will Teach Us?” It showed how student numbers are increasing while teacher numbers are remaining flat and expected to fall amid budget cutbacks.
This infographic generated a great deal of interest after it was posted to Facebook, attracting more than 100,000 views within the first 24 hours and topping out at more than 184,000 views after a week. These numbers are by far the highest that a single posting has ever produced.
Here is a selection of the 72 comments that were left:
Linda Hoang-Rackel: Easily 40 kids in a 30-level diploma course ... And you want results to matter!? ... I won't lie: 35 kids looks like a dream right now ... How sad is that?
Lynn Hemming: I wasn’t even physically able to walk around my classroom because it was so packed. I did the math and my average class size was 29 this year.
Jenn Phelps: 25 Grade 3s. 70 minutes prep per week, as long as Monday is not a holiday, then 35 minutes. Teaching for 20 years and this is one of my most complex, dynamic classes with very little support.
Joyce Cann: I am armpit deep in report cards this evening. I calculate roughly one hour per kid on the actual report card — not the marking and assessing, etc. Sure, a capable teacher can MANAGE a larger class, but at what cost? And the even more fundamental question: can the CHILDREN manage even bigger classes??
Aileen Peterson: And it’s not just class sizes that are changing — it is the composition and the complexity of those classes.
Lindsey M Young-Porter: My son’s grade one class is 28 kids, as was his kindergarten class last year. Classes are PACKED and they are only going to get worse. The only good thing about the price of oil dropping is that maybe it will slow the influx of people moving to Alberta.
Sue Tuli: I retired eight years ago ... nothing changes ... no wonder young teachers leave the profession in droves.
Sharon Lamb: Our teachers deserve better than this!!! Our children do too!!!
Marisa Labonte: Reading these comments is heartbreaking ... I am not in education but I say ... THANK YOU TEACHERS.