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Is there a national standard on the number of students per instrumental music teacher? What formulas or standards do other jurisdictions in Maryland use?

Question#: 2

BUDGET PAGE REFERENCE: 1 - 3

ANSWER:

There is no national standard on the number of students per instrumental music teacher.  The staffing formula, models, and standards for other Maryland districts vary. MCPS staff contacted other Maryland school systems to determine the class sizes for instrumental music. Some districts provided the range of class sizes and others provided their average class size.  MCPS falls in the middle with an average of nine students per class. 

Name of County

Average Class Size*

Frederick

NA

Montgomery

8 to 9

Fairfax, VA

7

Anne Arundel

12

Baltimore County

10

Prince George's

8 to 10

Howard

10 to 15

Harford

10 to 15

Carroll

9

Charles

18

Washington

4 to 22

Calvert

10 to 12

Cecil

4 to 6

Wicomico

5 to 10

Dorchester

7 to 25

The current MCPS process for providing instrumental music staffing allocations to schools includes the following:

  • At the end of January, staff members in the Office of Curriculum and Instructional Programs calculate the percentage of all students in grades 4 and 5 in each elementary school that are sectioned into instrumental music during the second marking period.
  • The percentage is then applied to the number of all students in grades 3 and 4 in each elementary school to project the number of students who will take instrumental music in grades 4 and 5 for the following school year. 
  • This provides a projected student enrollment number for instrumental music that is used to allocate the staffing.  MCPS allocates a .1 FTE, four-hour employee, for 46 students. A four-hour teacher provides on average five 30 minute sections of instruction.   This results in an average of 8 to 9 students per section.  Because this is an average, there are outliers where classes are larger and smaller than this average. 

This process was developed with principal input and has been in place for approximately five years.

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