Composite classes

What is a composite class?

A composite class is composed of groups of pupils from more than one year in the primary school.

Why do we form composite classes?

Schools are staffed according to national agreed staffing standards based on the total number of pupils within the school.

Maximum class sizes are 25 for P1, 30 for P2 and P3 and 33 for P4-7. When numbers are very small or slightly higher in any year group, composite classes may be formed.

In order to enhance learning and teaching throughout the school the Head Teacher must make the best use of the available staff, resources and accommodation. This could also lead to the formation of composite classes.

How do we form composite classes?

The Head Teacher will form a composite class based on guidelines issued by the education authority.

Twenty five is the maximum number of pupils in any composite class.

When making decisions on which children will be included in a composite class, the Head Teacher will consider the following:

  • Existing language groupings
  • Attainment levels
  • Evidence of child's work

There may be occasional exception to this, e.g. if a child has Additional Support Needs.

When will a composite class be formed?

Composite classes will be formed towards the end of an academic year in preparation for the following academic year i.e. May/June for August.

When will your child be in a composite class?

At any time during his/her primary school career. However, only in exceptional circumstances will a composite class be formed after the start of the school year, e.g. if there is a significant increase or decrease in the school roll.

How are pupils taught?

All schools organise their lessons based on national guidance. The programmes for learning and teaching ensure balanced, coherent progress across all stages and subject areas.

Learning and teaching is based on a variety of class and group teaching methods. Opportunities are also provided for independent learning and personal research.

Composite classes will not affect your child’s education since every pupil is taught according to their individual needs.

When and how will you be informed?

The Head Teacher will contact you in the summer term to inform you of class details for the coming year.

If you wish more information about composite classes please do not hesitate to contact the Head Teacher or Education Authority.

Page last updated: 23 February 2017