Almost 1,300 or 25% of primary school pupils in Longford are in ‘supersize’ classrooms of more than thirty children.
Of the 5,106 pupils in Longford, just 12% are in classrooms of less than twenty pupils and and 63% are in classrooms ranging in size between 20 and 29 pupils.
The latest figures released by the Department of Education show that the number of Longford pupils in ‘supersize’ classrooms has increased by 0.7% from the 2011/’12 figure of 24.3%.
Wicklow, at 31.5%, is the county with the highest number of children in classes of 30 or more, slightly ahead of Limerick county at 30.6pc.
The average class size rose to 24.7 in 2012-13, up from 24.5 the previous year. It compares with an EU average of 20.
An Irish National Teachers Organisation (INTO) spokesman described the figures as extremely worrying,adding: “Almost a quarter of all children are in classes of more than 30 while the EU average is 20 per class. This is a black mark on Ireland’s report card.”