At East Woods, we believe our small classes sizes are a plus for our students. Several research studies have uncovered a correlation between small class sizes, defined as under 20 students, with improved student outcomes. The benefits of small class size have been shown to have both an academic and social-emotional impact for students. While positive effects are especially clear for low-income students, improved learning and school satisfaction occurs across all socio-economic levels.
In an analysis of a variety of research studies, Glass and Smith (1978) found that classes of fewer than 20 students were associated with improved academic performance, and the strongest gains in performance were in early primary grades.
In 2000, the U. S. Department of Education did a study of over 2,500 schools and discovered, after controlling for student economic status, the only factor positively correlated with higher student test scores was class size. In this study, student achievement was strongly linked to smaller classes in upper grades. Finn (2005) found that four years of experience in small classes in Kindergarten through third grade improved student outcomes. Dynarski (2013) found that attending a school with small classes significantly increased the probability of a student earning a degree in a STEM (science, technology, engineering, or mathematics). Research has demonstrated that small classes improve increased academic engagement, student effort, student initiative and time on task. Basica (2010) discovered significantly increased interaction between students and teachers in small classes. Dee and West (2011) found that small class sizes improved student interest and motivation and a greater sense of belonging. Students in small classes were more likely to look forward to class, to believe the subject was useful, and to ask more questions and offer more answers in class. Small classes also led to students writing more quantity, and improved quality of essays and writing assignments.
At East Woods, we use the benefit of our small classes to tailor instruction and the learning experience to every single student. There are many small class size benefits, and at East Woods, we see them all.