How many teachers for pupils?

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PUPIL-teacher ratios in the Isle of Man are very similar or slightly better than those in England, it has been confirmed.

Education and Children Minister Eddie Teare MHK has said that while secondary schools pupil-teacher ratios in the Isle of Man are on a par with those of England, primary children enjoy a better ratio.

He was speaking in Tynwald this week in response to questioning from Peter Karran (LibVan, Onchan). Mr Karran asked Mr Teare to detail how many full-time equivalent staff are employed in his department, including supply teachers, consultants and anyone under contract but excluding those exclusively employed at the Isle of Man College, the Business School and the Youth Service.

He also wanted to know how many students are in full-time education at the schools funded by his department, excluding the College and the Business School, and how the above staff/student ratios compare with equivalent local authorities in the UK or elsewhere.

Mr Teare said there are 2,014 staff employed by his department, equating to 1,492.1 full-time equivalent posts. In addition, he said there are 659 supply staff covering a range of posts including classroom support, nursery nurses, exam invigilators as well as teachers. The supply staff only cover when a substantive member of staff is absent and therefore are replacements rather than duplicate staff members.

He said there are 11,811 students in full-time education – 6,073 primary pupils and 5,738 secondary pupils.

Mr Teare said the pupil-teacher ratio for the island’s primary schools is one member of staff to 18.9 pupils. For the secondary schools, the figure is one to 15.7. He said English pupil teacher ratios for 2010 show that, on average, it is one to 21.3 in primary schools and one to 15.7 in secondary.

Editors’ Note: has confirmed with the Department of Education and Children that Mr Teare was referring to pupil-teacher ratios.

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