Recent survey shows higher student to teacher ratio in schools - WNEM TV 5

Recent survey shows higher student to teacher ratio in schools

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HEMLOCK, MI (WNEM) -

Class sizes in Michigan are growing larger and have been for years.

As research shows that could have a negative impact on how well those students perform academically.

The Michigan Department of Education reports an average student to teacher ratio is 23-1.

When parents are choosing a school for their kids, a big decision factor is class size.

In a recent survey of teachers by Michigan Radio, they found the student to teacher ratio is closer to 27 students per one teacher. Almost 70 percent of teachers said the number of kids in their class has grown in recent years.

"Here at Hemlock schools our student to teacher ratio is about 20," Hemlock Superintendent Don Killingbeck said.

He said the district works to keep that number low so the kids get more one-on-one attention.

"I know last year we had an elementary class size that was over 25. We felt we needed to do something. We hired a para-pro, a highly qualified teacher, to be in that classroom to keep those numbers down," Killingbeck said.

The student to teacher ratio in a school doesn't necessarily mean your child will have that many classmates per teacher. Often times schools factor other staff, like counselors and librarians into that ratio.

Also, Killingbeck said there's a lot more that goes into a classroom to help your child learn than just numbers.

"A lot of it has to do with chemistry and the teacher and students in the classroom. So there's not a magic number," he said.

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