Source of picture http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ecuadoran_Students.jpg
At the risk of attracting rebuke… Classroom sizes could be doubled, but at a cost. Lets forget the fact that most schools will be constrained by the physical size of classroom and think about what would be required to say, take a class of 25 up to 50 students (maybe more if we stream lessons over the Internet).
Caveat: I am not advocating the following, nor are these necessarily issues at my school…
1. Respect for teacher. Remove behavioural management issues and there is more time for teaching. This may mean removing students to a “naughty” class, perhaps run by the military. Perhaps a school at Waiouru 🙂 (A law change allowing use of the the strap would not be required…. the classroom would be under martial law)
2. Students that are prepared for class. They have the required books, pens, pencils etc… (At one college I was at, 15 minutes each lesson was spend obtaining books, paper, pencils, protractors etc…). Perhaps we just issue resources and just charge the parents… Maybe a $500 bond upfront that we can just debit as required…. with a profit margin for the school of course.
3. Streamline and standardise. If you want to lower costs for ICT infrastructure in business you consolidate and standardise. So: for the “the long tail” of a class (low capability and/or low English skills) have separate specialised classrooms. Same for gifted. “We” can just teach 50 mainstream students. After all diversity is over rated. Perhaps also at Waiouru to keep costs down.
4. Remove Administration from teachers so they have more time to teach. Why not barcode students so that the rolls can be taken automatically, perhaps a GPS chip to see if they leave school. While we are at it, decree that no teacher has a form class, this could be done by Administration staff, or if it is pastoral care, then Social Welfare agencies.
5. User pays teachers…. Maybe we charge, (Mastercard sponsored cards) for each question a student asks. $5 reasonable? Again direct credit to parents would be efficient. Maybe even outsource questions to call centres in India or Malaysia… maybe then on 0.50c a question, better still outsource teaching itself and deliver via video conference!
End result: The student factory. Very Efficient. Very cheap. Gosh I need to be a policy analyst.
On a roll here………….. start primary school at age 6 or 7 and save even more $