HALIFAX – Nova Scotia's youngest students will continue to learn and thrive in class sizes that are at historic lows.
"I have been hearing from parents, teachers and others that keeping class sizes low is important to them," Education Minister Ramona Jennex said in a news release Thursday. "That's why the class-size cap put into place this school year will continue next year and into the future. We are investing in our youngest students so they can get their best start at school."
School boards must cap the number of students in grades Primary to 3 at 25, where possible. Funding for the cap is now built into the school board funding formula.
"While most of the province is undergoing enrolment decline, the cap targets areas that are experiencing growth and creates fairness in class sizes across Nova Scotia," said Jennex.
Information collected from the boards indicates that the average class size in grades Primary to 6 across the province this year was 22 students, about the same as last year.
Average classes this year are:
-- Grade Primary: 20
-- Grade 1: 21
-- Grade 2: 22
-- Grade 3: 22
-- Grade 4: 23
-- Grade 5: 23
-- Grade 6: 23
The class-size cap this year resulted in the hiring of more than 70 teachers.
Kids and Learning First includes a number of initiatives to help students in the younger grades. More students in Grades Primary to 2 are getting early literacy help under Succeeding in Reading. A revised math curriculum for grades Primary to 3 will give students more time to learn the basics and build a strong math foundation for future years.