A Dundee councillor has said multi-level classes are imposing “superhuman” demands on the city’s secondary school teachers.
Lochee Labour councillor Michael Marra said Freedom of Information figures released this week showed there were 190 classes across Dundee where teachers were handling more than a single qualification.
In 61 of the classes, three or more levels were being taught.
SNP councillor Stewart Hunter, the city council’s convener of education, previously denied claims made by Mr Marra that multi-level teaching was happening in the city.
Mr Marra said on Friday: “This is superhuman effort on the part of our teaching staff. But they are absolutely clear that it cannot be sustained and that our children are suffering due to year on year SNP cuts.
“It beggars belief that only days ago the SNP convener was repeating his flat out denials that this happened in Dundee at all.
“We have now established that multi-level teaching is in fact happening in every single secondary school in Dundee. How on earth can a convener not know this?”
Mr Marra said the executive director refused to provide any details on multi-level teaching when the education committee met on May 13.
“He could have responded that it is happening everywhere, all of the time,” he said.
” Is it actually possible that those in charge know so little about our schools or is there just a refusal to admit what is going on?
“More than one in 10 of all teachers have been cut from Dundee schools while the number of pupils has remained the same. It is little wonder that attainment is dropping dramatically?”
Earlier this week St John’s High School headteacher Fiona McLagan said multi-level classes allowed schools to offer a wider variety of subjects to pupils, while executive director of education Paul Clancy said many courses were designed to be taught to different levels of pupil.
In the Scottish Parliament on Thursday, education secretary John Swinney accused the Scottish Conservatives of “cooking up a moanfest” by querying the proliferation of multi-level classes
Children and families services convener Stewart Hunter accused Mr Marra of being “disingenuous”.
He said: “I have made absolutely no comment on multi-level teaching in the last few weeks so for Councillor Marra to claim I was talking about it just days ago is factually inaccurate.
“At the last children and families committee Councillor Marra asked for the exact number of multi-level classes in Dundee schools and the executive director stated that he did not have the exact figures to hand but that he would get that information to him as soon as possible.
“At no point did he refuse to provide details, quite the opposite, and nor did he at any point say that multi-level teaching didn’t happen in Dundee schools.
“For an elected member to deliberately misquote a council officer is disgraceful and quite frankly shows just how weak his argument is.”