Full Question: I am open to new and 'innovative change' though I find it very difficult working in a space where there are over 100 children (4 classes and four teachers - Year 2) due to the noise level. What are your thoughts on this? My suggestion is, that retractable doors should be installed so that the classrooms may have the choice.
Answer: “I am a great fan of innovative learning spaces and would rather deal with the issues around these than fixing the regular one-teacher classes. When open environments work they are stunning and so many students are beneficiaries. Teachers also work together, have greater chances of enduring collective efficacy, and indeed when done well can reduce the after-hours burden on teachers. The noise level can indeed be a concern, but the answer is not creating regular classes within – but a) creating guidelines for quieter times, creating spaces with sound reducers, and such. You say they cannot hear the “teacher” and this hints as multiple teachers working separately in the one space, which is not ideal, nor indeed the value of open spaces” (John Hattie, personal communication, December 24, 2018).