Class Size in D38
Colorado does not have state mandated class sizes, but research shows that smaller class sizes are shown to improve learning outcomes for all students.
The Effectiveness of Class Size Reduction (National Education Policy Center)
Class Size and Student Achievement (Center for Public Education)
When new families move to the district, the district is required to accept them at their local school. This means that class size limits can be exceeded when new students arrive after the start of the school year. In 2016-2017, for instance, 56 new students enrolled at Bear Creek Elementary over the winter break. New classrooms could not be started mid-year, so class sizes at all grade levels grew. The problem at the middle school is that there is no more available space for additional classrooms, so the only option is to add kids to existing classrooms, pushing class sizes up. One 7th grade math class had 40 students during the 2017-2018 school year.
This amount of students also impacts common areas of the building. With over-crowded hallways, students have trouble making it to their next class in the allotted time. Lines for the bathrooms and water fountains exceed their capacity. The cafeteria is more than full at lunchtime and some students only have a few minutes to eat their food once they make it through the crowded lunch line. In order to accommodate all of the children in the building, some lunch periods may start before 11:00 a.m. or go as late as 1:20 p.m.