Class size reduction cited as top spending priority by majority of Canadians since 1997

July 10, 2008

(CTF News Service – Moncton, N.B.)   The Canadian public continues to rank class size reduction as the number one spending priority in education, according to a national public opinion poll released today by the Canadian Teachers’ Federation (CTF).

Releasing the findings at the Federation’s Annual General Meeting in Moncton, N.B., CTF President Emily Noble explains that the issue of smaller class sizes is not new and has kept coming to the fore as the priority among Canadians: “In 7 of the 8 public opinion polls conducted nationally since 1995, class size reduction remained at the top of the spending priority list, despite variations over time in the other priorities surveyed.

“The public associates small classes with better opportunities for success, allowing teachers to give more personal attention to students, explains Noble. More individualized attention for students means achieving the level of performance that matches the students’ abilities and learning skills.”

The poll also shows an all-time record support for increased government funding for public education. When asked whether they would favour or oppose increased funding for public elementary and secondary schools, 9 out of 10 Canadians said they would support increased government funding.

Please follow these links for highlights and percentage breakdowns.

“This support for increased government funding of education is the highest among 10 surveys conducted on this issue since 1986. Clearly, these findings underline the value placed by Canadians on their education and students’ performance in school.”

The National Issues in Education Poll, commissioned by CTF every two years, examines the public’s views and opinions on public education in Canada. The poll was conducted online by Vector Research + Development Inc. from Feb. 27 to March 11, 2008, with 2,523 Canadians throughout the country.

CTF speaks for 220,000 teachers in Canada as their national voice on education and related social issues. CTF membership includes Member organizations in every province and territory in Canada as well as an Affiliate Member in Ontario. CTF (http://www.ctf-fce.ca) is also a member of the international body of teachers, Education International (http://www.ei-ie.org).

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Comments:
Emily Noble, CTF President, 613-688 -4300 or 613-899-4209 (cell)

Background information:
Myles Ellis, Director of Economic and Member Services, 613-688-4302 or 613-899-4213 (cell)

Media contact:
Francine Filion, Director of Communications, 613-688-4314 or 613-899-4247 (cell)