ERIC Number: ED423600
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
Class Size Reduction: Lessons Learned from Experience. Policy Brief No. Twenty-Three.
McRobbie, Joan; Finn, Jeremy D.; Harman, Patrick
New federal proposals have fueled national interest in class-size reduction (CSR). However, CSR raises numerous concerns, some of which are addressed in this policy brief. The text draws on the experiences of states and districts that have implemented CSR. The brief addresses the following 15 concerns: Do small classes in and of themselves affect student learning? What conditions are critical to achieving the small-class effect? What do we know about why small classes are academically beneficial? How small is small enough? Can small-class features be identified and used in large classes to create a small-class environment? For how long do students need to be in small classes to gain lasting benefits? Is CSR worth the cost? How much does CSR typically cost? Are there ways to contain the costs of reducing class size? Is the necessary infrastructure in place to support CSR? Should CSR be used in conjunction with other strategies? Will CSR be optional or mandatory? Will the funding be flat or wealth-adjusted? Will there be a rigid cap or is the number of students per class flexible? Will small classes be self-contained or team-taught? A brief overview of four CSR initiatives is presented. (Contains 27 endnotes.) (RJM)
Descriptors: Class Size, Educational Assessment, Elementary Education, Evaluation Needs, Information Needs, Program Effectiveness, Program Evaluation, Teacher Student Ratio
WestEd, 730 Harrison Street, San Francisco, CA 94107-1242; Web site: http://www.WestEd.org/policy
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: WestEd, San Francisco, CA.