HUNDREDS of children are being crammed into classes of 36 pupils or more figures released this week show.

Bury North has the second highest numbers of pupils ­— 474 ­— being taught in large classes according to date collated by the teachers' union, National Education Union (NEU).

And the figures also show that the number of pupils in classes of more than 30 children have risen by 43 per cent since 2011, from 4232 to 6038 ­— compared to an national increase of 29 per cent.

Natasha Shears, Secretary of Bury NEU said: “These figures show the terrible impact of Government cuts on education.

"Outsized classes mean that pupils do not receive enough individual attention and stop them reaching their full potential. The Government must fully reverse the funding cuts for schools in Bury.”

Nationally, the union says that almost one million pupils are now in school classes of 31 or more, up almost 30 per cent since 2011.

Joint general secretary of the NEU, Dr Mary Bousted, blamed the statistics on a "real-terms funding crisis" in education.

The percentage of students in classes of 36 or more has risen sharply, with 63,566 youngsters in classes of that size last year, up 44 per cent since 2010-11.

Teachers want the next Government to prioritise reducing class sizes, with 34 per cent of those polled choosing it as their top priority when questioned.

Dr Bousted said: "The real-terms funding crisis has had catastrophic effects, including a direct impact on class size.

"Today's analysis will ring true for every parent who has witnessed their school cutting teaching assistant posts, reducing subject choice or organising fundraiser events and begging letters.

"Parents are no fools. They can see with their own eyes the impact of funding pressures on their children's education and the reduction in individual contact time that their child has with their teachers."