Space to Learn, Space to Teach

Class Size Does Matter


Some Fairfax County students begin their educational career from day one in Kindergarten in a super-sized classroom. If you have ever had or spent time with a five-year old, imagine trying to learn or teach with 30 of them in one class!

Much of the focus of the School Board has been on making many classrooms very small to support student achievement of some students. The next School Board needs to commit to right-sizing classrooms to appropriately prioritize the academic achievement of all students!

Students need appropriate space to learn. The more crowded a school building is, or their specific classroom, the more difficult it is to receive quality time and instruction for each student. It’s pretty simple – crammed schools and classrooms aren’t a great place to learn.

Guiding resources to build classrooms and staff schools based on the student population is an essential role for the School Board. Giving teachers the classroom and itinerant space they need to build and deliver their curriculum is good for teachers and for students!


Parents know when their child’s classroom is overcrowded. The first time back to school to meet a teacher and visit a classroom reveals everything – either there is room to move between desks and chairs and there is a vision of their child learning in the coming year or there is a sense of concern.

Supporting a teacher over the course of an academic year, parents feel for their teacher. They want to help – but no parent can buy a teacher a bigger classroom or a small number of students!

Classrooms which are fair in size ensure the best possible experience for students and teachers alike. The next School Board has to prioritize a review of how classrooms are sized around the county to meet the needs of students fairly.

Permanent classrooms have to be a part of the solution – instead of trailers as temporary facilities becoming the permanent answer.


Super-sized schools, unbalanced class sizes and boundary issues – along with program & course offerings – demand reasonable, common sense solutions which reflect the needs of our community. Better projections at the school level, student population and curriculum planning, and a strategic vision on capital needs must be priorities of the next Fairfax County School Board.

  • Elizabeth supports best practices which focus on excellence in education for each student. As such, the priorities of the budget should be to drive money to classrooms in support of student achievement with caution not to expand the division’s mission of K-12 education.
  • Families should be able to send their children to their neighborhood school. Boundary changes are typically tumultuous for communities and students. Elizabeth emphasizes that boundary changes should not be made to fulfill a School Board agenda, but only for well-documented needs and in transparent collaboration with the public.
  • School facilities should be used wisely and respected as a taxpayer-funded resource and permanent, brick and mortar schools should be the main goal for all with a goal to eliminate over 1 million square feet of trailers.
  • All unused and under-used public resources should be fully utilized – students languishing in trailers and overcrowded schools and classrooms should not be an option in Fairfax County!
right-sized classrooms & schools are good for all
The Right Space in the Right Place