The projected pupil-teacher ratios in first and second level schools in the current school year are approximately 19.0:1 and 14.0:1, respectively. The most recently published international comparison of pupil-teacher ratios relates to the 1998-99 school year. The table, below, provides data on pupil-teacher ratios at primary and second level in 1998-99 in European countries for which comparable information is readily available. The country means at OECD, European and EU levels are also provided.
Although the pupil-teacher ratio in Ireland is still above the average for European and OECD countries at primary level, it has fallen very significantly at this level over the past decade leading to a considerable narrowing of the gap with the rest of Europe and the OECD. Furthermore, at second level, the pupil-teacher ratio is now approaching the OECD average having been reduced steadily over recent years.
In line with Government policy, my Department will continue to provide for further reductions in the pupil-teacher ratio within available resources and subject to spending priorities within the education sector. Priority will be given to pupils with special needs and those from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Ratio of students to Teaching Staff in some European
For all types of institutions
(based on full-time equivalents)