BSM Allocates Budget for 3 New Teachers


Brook Wenande

The BSM budget has been expanded to create room for three new teachers.

As BSM begins to prepare for the 2022-2023 school year, the school has updated their budget to reflect room for up to three new teachers. The change comes in light of high enrollment, rising class sizes, and plans to add new course options.

“We have a lot of new classes that we want to offer next year and we have really full enrollment. So we want to make sure that we’re just adding more teachers to make the class sizes a little bit smaller and make sure that we can run all the programs that we want,” Principal Stephanie Nitchals said.

According to Nitchals, BSM has experienced near-record high enrollment over the past few years. The school plans to cap enrollment near current levels for next year. “We’re not going to add more students above what we have this year… we’re really full this year too,” Nitchals said.

Higher enrollment has resulted in rising class sizes. Especially over the past few years, teachers have faced increasing pressure to adjust to this shift. Theology teacher Becca Meagher explains that in order to combat rising class sizes, she has had to add more sections to reduce the load per class. “We actually deliberately added a section I think, for our ninth graders, so that we could make smaller classes,” Meagher said.

We actually deliberately added a section I think, for our ninth graders, so that we could make smaller classes

— Meagher

Nitchals speculates that adding new teachers could reduce some class sizes from 26-27 students to 22-23. This would have a substantial impact on teacher workload. “Even a difference between 21 and 26 students, just five kids, it’s remarkable how much different the class is,” Meagher said.

Expanding the budget to accommodate more teachers also presents an exciting opportunity to offer new classes next year. Nitchals cites computer science in particular as an area for improvement. “We want to offer more computer science … if we do that, then the teachers who teach computer science now would be pulled away from engineering. And so if we get a lot of students who want to take computer science … we would hire a computer science specific teacher,” Nitchals said.

The specific breakdown of which departments new teachers will go to will be heavily influenced by which classes students register for next year. However, as always, core classes are most in need. English and theology classes have historically had the highest class sizes at BSM and can be expected to gain at least one new teacher next year. “It depends on after you all [students] register, and we find out what our need is, but it’ll likely be in the core classes that are a little bit larger,” Nitchals said.