Councilmember Treyger and Speaker Johnson Introduce Class Size Reduction Bill

Earlier today, City Council Education Committee Chair Mark Treyger and Council Speaker Corey Johnson announced and introduced legislation which would effectively reduce class sizes by updating NYC’s Administrative Code.

The bill (Int. No. 2374) will raise the minimum per person classroom space to 35 square feet per student from the current 20 square feet for grades 1–12. This new standard for grades 1-12 would align with the current standard for Pre-K and kindergarten classes. The legislation would mandate all schools in NYC to be compliant by September 2024, with 33% of schools compliant by the start of the 2022–23 school year and 66% by the start of the 2023-2024 school year. The bill also requires the DOE to provide an annual report to track progress until 100% of city schools meet this new health and safety requirement by the start of the 2024–25 school year.

During a press conference announcing the legislation, Councilmember Treyger was joined by fellow Councilmember and Finance Committee Chair Daniel Dromm, United Federation of Teachers (UFT) President Michael Mulgrew, and UFT Secretary LeRoy Barr. Treyger, a former public school teacher, noted that the impacted section of the code hasn’t been updated since the 1930s, and emphasized the importance of reducing class size for public health, saying, “We are still facing a serious pandemic and there is an increasing possibility that COVID variants will be with us for years to come. To help make sure that public school classrooms remain safe places, we need stricter space limits for all students, not just the city’s youngest.”

NYC Council Finance Chair Daniel Dromm, also a former public school teacher, spoke on the importance of reducing class sizes for both learning outcomes and public health, saying, “The incorporation of a smaller class size will ultimately benefit the future learning and health of all NYC school children. Due to overcrowding in many districts such as mine, this initiative will be challenging but also worthwhile. I look forward to passing this legislation.”

Categories News, News Clips, Updates | Tags: | Posted on July 29, 2021

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