Students see effects of crowded classes

Lindsay Richardson had to sit on a couch at the beginning of the school year. “I felt uncomfortable and like an outcast,” says the junior at Silverado High School. “I just wanted to sit at a desk so I could concentrate.”

Richardson’s situation was a result of overcrowding, and the large class sizes that are plaguing Clark County schools. Large groups of students are forced to squeeze into classrooms that were built for far fewer. Many students are left without supplies or desks to sit at.

Richardson since has been assigned a desk, but her class size hasn’t decreased by much.

“There is nobody on the couch anymore, but it’s still pretty big, and all the seats are filled,” she says.

But even if every student in a large class had a desk, the question of how large class sizes might affect a student’s ability to learn remains.

Silverado Principal Kim Grytdahl thinks teens learn better in smaller class settings.

“There is more teacher contact time,” she says, and it’s easier for teachers to “target the kids’ individual weaknesses.”

Students, too, see the effects that large class sizes can have on learning.

“Everyone’s talking and you can’t hear, especially when the teacher has no control,” says Ashley Peterson, a senior at Clark High School.

After speaking with colleagues in the field, Grytdahl learned that other school systems average 25 to 30 students per class,.

According to the Clark County School District, the ratio of high school students to teachers in the district is 32 to 1. But many classes are considerably larger.

“My statistics class has 44 kids,” says Samuel Ramirez, a senior at Las Vegas High School. Ramirez says he thinks teachers spend more time disciplining teens in larger classes than actually teaching, and that his teachers with smaller classes can spend more one-on-one time with students.

At Silverado, teacher and English-department head Nancy Harding says she thinks the department’s largest class has 45 students.

“They’re all big,” Grytdahl says. “All about the same, with 45 or more.”

Grytdahl says all the schools are trying to fix the problem of large class sizes, but that economic conditions make it difficult.

“As long as funding is bad, class sizes will remain big,” Grytdahl says.

An elegant Tea Party for substance abuse and homeless women
An elegant Tea Party for substance abuse and homeless women at WestCare Women Children Campus in Las Vegas. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Former 51s manager Wally Backman chats about new job
Former Las Vegas 51s manager Wally Backman talks about his new job with the independent league Long Island Ducks during the Baseball Winter Meetings in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Dec. 10, 2018. (Ron Kantowski/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Inside the kitchen at Springs Preserve
The staff of Divine Events do party preparation in the kitchen at Divine Cafe at Springs Preserve. With nine parties the following day, this is a particularly busy time for the crew. (Heidi Knapp Rinella/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Pearl Harbor survivor Edward Hall talks about his memories of Dec. 7, 1941
U.S. Army Corps Edward Hall, a 95-year-old survivor of Pearl Harbor talks about his memories of that horrific day. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Roy Choi on cooking for Park MGM employees
As he prepares to open his new restaurant Best Friend later this month at Park MGM, celebrity chef Roy Choi took the time to cook for the resort’s employees Tuesday. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Best Friend Menu Reveal Wednesday
Chef Roy Choi tells us what to expect from Wednesday’s Facebook Live Menu Reveal for his new Park MGM restaurant Best Friend. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas Great Santa Run
People participated in the 14th annual Las Vegas Great Santa Run which raises cubs for Opportunity Village.
World Holidays Exhibit At The Natural History Museum
Migratory Bird Day teaches adults and kids to celebrate birds
Different organizations offered activities for kids and adults to learn about birds and celebrate their migration journey at Sunset Park. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
"Jackson: The Red Rock Canyon Burro" is a children's book about Red Rock Canyon
"Jackson: The Red Rock Canyon Burro" is a children's book about Red Rock Canyon (Janna Karel Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Interfaith Amigos speak in Las Vegas
Celebrity photographer dedicates dance book to Las Vegas shooting victims
Behind the scenes with local celebrity photographer Jerry Metellus as he talks about his Dance For Vegas coffee book dedicated to the 58 victims of the October 1 shooting. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
Dreamsickle Kids Foundation founder Gina Glass talks awareness
Gina Glass, 35, founded Dreamsickle Kids Foundation to raise awareness for sickle cell disease in Nevada. (Jessie Bekker/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
News Headlines
Local Spotlight
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like