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Table 7. Average class size in public primary schools, middle schools, high schools, and schools with combined grades, by classroom type and selected school characteristics: 2015–16


    Primary schools   Middle schools   High schools   Combined grade schools  
Selected school characteristic   Average class size for teachers in self-contained classes   Average class size for teachers in departmentalized instruction   Average class size for teachers in self-contained classes   Average class size for teachers in departmentalized instruction   Average class size for teachers in self-contained classes   Average class size for teachers in departmentalized instruction   Average class size for teachers in self-contained classes   Average class size for teachers in departmentalized instruction  
All public schools   21.2   26.5   14.3   26.8   15.0   26.0   15.7   21.8  
                                   
School classification                                  
Traditional public   21.2   26.7   14.2   26.8   14.7   26.0   14.1   19.4  
Charter school   21.9   24.6   17.0 ! 26.2   21.7   25.1   21.7   28.3  
                                   
Community type                                  
City1   21.7   27.6   15.5   27.8   15.9   27.6   15.7   26.0  
Suburban   21.7   27.3   14.0   27.2   14.8   26.6   15.9   25.4  
Town   20.7   23.6   13.8   25.8   14.7   24.0   14.4   19.1  
Rural   19.5   25.0   13.0   24.8   14.1   23.0   15.9   18.1  
                                   
Student enrollment                                  
Less than 100   13.3   16.5   9.5   13.6   18.5   21.8   8.2   10.7  
100-199   18.6   19.0   16.1   20.9   14.6   18.1   11.4   14.2  
200-499   20.4   25.3   14.6   25.1   14.4   22.4   15.9   18.2  
500-749   21.8   27.5   15.4   26.3   13.8   22.6   18.0   23.8  
750-999   22.5   28.2   13.1   26.9   17.4   24.1   20.3   26.9  
1,000 or more   23.6   29.3   13.5   29.6   14.7   27.9   23.6   31.1  
                                   
Percent of K-12 students who were approved for free or reduced-price lunches                                  
0-34   21.7   26.8   14.4   27.5   12.7   26.8   17.2   21.2  
35-49   21.1   27.9   12.3   26.4   14.9   25.1   15.8   19.5  
50-74   21.2   27.1   12.5   26.4   16.7   26.3   15.4   21.7  
75 or more   21.0   25.7   16.5   26.5   14.8   25.8   13.4   19.0  
School did not participate in free or reduced-price lunch program   20.8   23.7   20.8 ! 25.2   18.4   21.2   20.6   30.6  
! Interpret data with caution. The coefficient of variation (CV) for this estimate is between 30 percent and 50 percent (i.e., the standard error is at least 30 percent and less than 50 percent of the estimate).
1 Interpret data on city teachers with caution. After nonresponse adjustments, the nonresponse bias for this category is greater than for other characteristics.
NOTE: Self-contained classes are defined as instruction to the same group of students all or most of the day in multiple subjects, and departmentalized instruction is defined as instruction to several classes of different students most or all of the day in one or more subjects. Among all public school teachers, 26 percent teach self-contained classes in primary schools, 1 percent in middle schools, 1 percent in high schools, and 1 percent in combined schools; 7 percent teach departmentalized classes in primary schools, 14 percent in middle schools, 25 percent in high schools, and 4 percent in combined schools; 15 percent teach other types of classes, such as elementary subject specialist classes, team-taught classes, and "pull-out" or "push-in" classes in primary schools, 3 percent in middle schools, 3 percent in high schools, and 1 percent in combined schools. Detail may not sum to totals because of rounding.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, Schools and Staffing Survey (SASS), "Public School Teacher Data File," 2015–16.