Composite Classes - FAQs

Why do schools have composite classes?

  • There can be too many children at one stage to be taught in one class but not enough for two classes.
  • The school roll as a whole is not large enough to provide staffing to teach each stage separately due to low or high numbers of children at one or more stages.

Will my child be held back a year if he/she is in a composite class?

  • No. Our curriculum and assessment guidelines provide a framework for pupil centred learning and all children experience a curriculum suited to their age, ability and stage.

Will my child always be in a composite class?

  • Not necessarily. The need for composite classes changes as the roll of the school fluctuates. Our guidelines recommend that the formation of composite classes is reviewed each year.

Will my child be able to mix with the rest of his/her stage?

  • Yes. Our staff will timetable opportunities across the curriculum which will enable all pupils of one stage to have time together.

How will my child be taught in a composite class?

  • Teachers will ensure that all children work within programmes suitable for their age, aptitude and ability. Your child will not be ‘held back’ or ‘struggle to keep up’ in any class.
  • All our teachers are trained to work with mixed ability classes whether in a straight year or in composite class. In all primary classes there are wide ranges of abilities and all children will learn in different ways, responding to a variety of methods and resources. Our teachers are well able to adapt to the different needs within any class and plan accordingly.
  • There is no evidence to support the view that pupils in composite classes perform either above or below that of pupils in single-age classes. There is however some evidence to show that pupils in composite classes gain socially.