[Design and Technology] class numbers

Paul Haydock docca1 at hotmail.com
Sat Dec 3 19:49:25 AEDT 2016

Hi kaylen,
We have year 7 & 8 classes that usually reach 25, 26 or 27 students. Year 9 at 22 and year 10-12 capped at 20 students.

Sent from my iPhone

On 29 Nov. 2016, at 3:59 pm, Craig Watson <C.Watson at kardinia.vic.edu.au<mailto:C.Watson at kardinia.vic.edu.au>> wrote:

Hi Kaylen,
Here is some information I received last year over a similar question I had. Hope it is helpful. Craig.

Class Size
The Victorian Government Schools Agreement (2013) has the following information in relation to class sizes.
1.    The principal, as the Employer’s representative, will use the consultation provisions of this agreement when considering the class sizes in a school.
2.    It is recognised that there are varied forms of teaching arrangements (including practical classes, team teaching and lecture tutorials) and different structural options, (including P-12 arrangements, senior school arrangements and senior campuses) that optimise student learning opportunities. In addition, the organisation of teaching should provide and maintain, so far as is practicable, a working environment that is safe and without risks to health.
3.    In this context, and within the fixed resources provided to schools and the physical facilities schedule, class size should be planned on the minimum possible. Provided that class sizes should be planned generally on the following basis:
a.    P to 6 - an average of 26 provided that the average class size of 21 at P-2 is maintained;
b.    7 to 12 – groups of up to 25 students.
Practical class sizes

c.    Schools are required to provide and maintain, so far as is practicable, a working environment that is safe and without risks to health.
d.    Schools should plan for the minimum practical class sizes possible given available resources. Practical class sizes should be determined having regard to the nature of the activities, the nature of the equipment used, the maturity and competence of the students and the capabilities of the teacher to provide expert supervision.
e.    A practical class includes a subject or course where the use of equipment and/or material of a potentially dangerous nature is involved and/or a class in which students are undertaking manual or other tasks requiring greater individual supervision of the classroom activity.
As such, it is up to the principal to determine appropriate class sizes with consideration to nature of the activities, the nature of the equipment used, the maturity and competence of the students and the capabilities of the teacher to provide expert supervision. Some of these factors are expanded further below.

Class Spacing and Layout
The workplace must ensure that spacing is assessed when determining whether an art, design or technology area is appropriate. This includes assessing:
The overall size of the room – can all of the required equipment, students and school employees physically fit into the space. An assessment of the space should include:

  *   effective walkways;
  *   lines of site;
  *   additional space for the effective use of plant and equipment;
  *   additional space to allow for the handling of materials (e.g. moving timber);
  *   additional space required for materials storage; and
  *   additional space required for the storage of works/projects that are in progress or completed.
Spacing around Individual Plant and Equipment – can each item of plant and equipment be used safely and efficiently with respect to spacing? In general, it is recommended that there is at least 800mm free space around the point of use of any plant. This is taken from Compliance Code - Workplace Amenities and Work Environment (Worksafe Victoria, September 2008) which states:
‘Movement in and around workstations needs to be free of obstructions such as plant, furniture, materials or other employees. Employers need to ensure that the space for employees to move and work between plant, equipment, structures and materials is at least 800mm. This is to enable employees to work safely between machines, benches or counters. It will also allow them to evacuate quickly in an emergency.’

Figure 1: Space required around plant
It should be noted that 800mm is only a general recommendation. The operation of the specific plant should be taken into account when determining appropriate spacing. For example a drop saw may require more space to either side to allow for the material being cut. Conversely, a fully enclosed CNC machine may only require 800mm.
Layout of the Room – has the layout of the room been considered in terms of:

  *   Frequency of plant and equipment use.
·         Are the most frequently used items easily accessible?
·         Are the most frequently used items grouped together? Could this cause congestion?

  *   Location of higher risk equipment or activities. Are higher risk equipment or tasks located in an easily visible location, to enable active supervision, or located away from high traffic walkways?
  *   Location of store areas. Does the location of stored materials have any impact on the placement of plant/equipment and/or activities?
  *   Project progression. Have plant/equipment and/or activities been located so that minimum movement is required. This would be especially relevant when one task logically follows on from another (e.g. clay storage ==> potter’s wheel ==> kiln).
Overall, when determining the layout of a room, operations within that room must be able to be completed safely.

From: destech-bounces at edulists.com.au<mailto:destech-bounces at edulists.com.au> [mailto:destech-bounces at edulists.com.au] On Behalf Of Kaylen Kornberg
Sent: Tuesday, 29 November 2016 3:33 PM
To: Design and Technology Teachers' Mailing List (destech at edulists.com.au<mailto:destech at edulists.com.au>)
Subject: [Design and Technology] class numbers

Hi all.
Presently we are undergoing some changes at school and our wood tech class sizes have increased dramatically. Can I have some indication of what other schools’ class sizes are capped at for yrs 7-9  please as I am really concerned about OH&S issues and the size of the room as we can only fit 10 rectangular benches in the space. Also, is there a specific distance between benches that is documented that can be used as a guide?
Thanks so much everyone as I am getting a bit stressed about all of this.
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