Education minister open to negotiating changes to class sizes in Ontario

classroom

TORONTO - Ontario Education Minister Stephen Lecce says he is open to negotiating a smaller boost to class sizes with teachers.
    
The government announced in the spring that high school class sizes would rise from an average of 22 to 28 students over four years.
    
It says that will mean 3,475 fewer teachers in the system, but that will be through not filling positions when teachers quit or retire, the government says there will be no ``involuntary'' job losses.
    
Teachers have warned that the changes will lead to fewer course offerings and extracurricular activities, and that some classes, specialized ones, in particular, would balloon in size.
    
Lecce says today that high school class sizes this year would only increase to an average of 22.5.
   
Ontario is also in the middle of bargaining with teachers and education workers, and Lecce says he is open to changing the plan to increase class sizes if teachers and boards can propose other ways to find cost savings.