Teachers at Santa Fe feeling the pressure of rising number of students


Zachary McNaught

Santa Fe’s crowded hallways.

Zachary Mcnaught, Howler Staff Writer

Santa Fe has more than 200 students than it did last year, taking the school from 2,600 to over 2,800. In 29 years of being open, Santa Fe has never had this many students in its classrooms. This is making teaching an increasingly stressful job.

Teachers often experience heavy stress throughout the school year. This stress can come from a multitude of things. One of the largest problems nowadays is the size of these teachers’ classes.

“You know when there’s a class of like 45 kids in a class it can be hard to get all the information to them,” Teacher Elizabeth Carlton said.

Santa Fe is nearing its student capacity and will have to build more classrooms soon. 

“Hallways are more packed than ever and classes are holding upwards of 40 students in one class,” Jason Hayes, Santa Fe Principal said.

However, the problems are not only appearing in the hallways.

“It’s gotten increasingly more difficult to connect with a student one-on-one,” said Valerie Roberson, Head of the English Department.

The situation has become increasingly dire over this year of school. But, having this problem is not too bad for Edmond Schools. In a way, it shows a type of beauty about Edmond Santa Fe. Santa Fe is one of the only majority-minority in Edmond.

“We have 51% Hispanic, Black and other races while having 49% White,” 10-12 Counselor Kisha Hardy said.

Overpopulation is an issue in Santa Fe, but it can have positives. With the influx of students, elective courses have garnered more interest. Santa Fe has hired six new teachers for electives this year, however, there are not enough available classrooms needed to fulfill the requirements to add more electives. Teachers are tasked to move from classroom to classroom to teach their different courses. Santa Fe Principal Jason Hayes says adding more classrooms will allow more elective courses to be offered.

“We are building six new classrooms for new electives; one we are considering is pottery. Hayes said. We have a teacher for it but not a specialized classroom for it,” 

Core class teachers are experiencing class sizes with up to 45 to 50 kids. Most of these classes have had kids moved out of them and distributed more evenly, but class sizes are still at an all-time high.