The Barnsley East MP is calling for urgent action after revealing thousands of pupils in the borough’s primary schools are now being taught in ‘super-size’ classes.
The statistics, from the independent House of Commons Library, show that 3,414 young schoolchildren are now in classes of more than 30 pupils.
Of those students, 195 are in classes of 36 or more children, and one class is thought to have as many as 45 pupils. This means that more than one in six Barnsley primary school pupils are now in oversize classes.
Stephanie, a former teacher, said the new figures ‘show the effect of government neglect of the education system’, saying school budget cuts and teacher shortages have forced school pupils into class sizes of over 30.
"These figures just show the impact of the Tories' neglect of Barnsley schools," she said. "Local head teachers are facing a budget squeeze from Tory cuts, and our kids are paying the price.
"As a former teacher myself, I know how important reasonable class sizes are for teaching. I know how hard teachers work, and it's a testament to them that despite the difficulties faced by schools across Barnsley we have still seen success in attainment levels.
"But instead of tackling the shortage of teachers, the government has missed its recruitment target in each of the last five years."
Read more in this week's Barnsley Chronicle