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Protecting Smaller Class Sizes

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Protecting Smaller Class Sizes

McGuinty Government Ensuring Student Success, Protecting 20,000 Jobs

Ministry of Education

Ontario is taking further steps to protect the gains made in education - and to protect 20,000 teaching and support jobs - by ensuring smaller class sizes.

Under the Education Act, a new regulation will set maximum average class sizes for students from kindergarten to Grade 12. They include:

  • a board average of 26 students per two instructors for full-day kindergarten
  • a cap of 23 students for junior kindergarten (in schools where FDK has not yet been rolled out) through to Grade 3, with 90 per cent of classes at 20 or fewer students
  • a board average of 24.5 students for Grades 4 to 8, with differences for some boards consistent with previous commitments to class size reductions  
  • a board average of 22 students for Grades 9 to 12.

Students in smaller classes get more one-on-one time with their teachers, do better in school and are more likely to succeed in high school and beyond. Ontario's decision to protect small class sizes will support continued student success and preserve teacher jobs that would otherwise be lost if class sizes increased.

Maintaining smaller class sizes is just one of several steps the McGuinty government is taking to protect the gains made in education since 2003. Others include continuing to roll-out full-day kindergarten, reducing administrative costs and preserving 20,000 teacher and support staff jobs.

Quick Facts

  • The government has funded 5,100 new teaching positions for primary grades, 650 new teaching positions for Grades 4 to 8, 4,860 elementary specialist positions, and 2,800 for Grades 9 to12 between 2003 and 2013.
  • Ontario will fund 1,280 new teaching positions this upcoming year.
  • The 2012-13 Grants for Student Needs (GSN) is approximately $21 billion - up $6.5 billion, or 45 per cent, since 2003.

Additional Resources


“Our government is committed to delivering the best education possible for Ontario's students, and keeping class sizes small is a key part of that. Small class sizes are better for our students and better for our teachers. Our priority is keeping teachers in the classroom to protect the gains we have made working together in education.”

Laurel Broten

Minister of Education

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