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Wake County school system's growth falls 910 students short of projections

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Instead of 1,000 students above projection, it turns out the Wake County school system is 910 students below projection this school year.

School communications officials say this year's official enrollment, based off the 20th day of classes last week, is 149,508 students. That's a net gain of 2,821 students from last year's total of 146,687 students.

A gain of more than 2,800 kids is nothing to sneeze about. But keep in mind the official enrollment projection, used in the budget presented to the county, called for 150,418 students this year.

This year's 20th day figure is actually smaller than the Day 10 figure of 149,528 students.

Back in the summer, Wake was talking about potentially being 1,000 students over projection. Wake had 151,487 students registered in June for this school year.

Chief Transformation Officer Judy Peppler had warned that the registration numbers might be inflated by people who participated in the choice plan but who decided not enroll after not getting the school they wanted.

Enrollment projections are jointly done by school and county staff.

Whether being this far below projection causes a problem remains to be seen. Will it have a negative impact on the school bond campaign?

Will the highly ticked off Republican majority on the Wake County Commissioners try to demand that the school system return part of the budget funding built on the higher projection?

This year's total leaves Wake as the largest district in the state and the 16th largest nationally.


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Are there similar numbers for charter, private & homeschool?

1,000 of those registered in June didn't show up in August.  Did the other school options gain that many more students?  Did WCPSS gain or lose market share during the berief period the choice paln was in effect?

Interesting questions, but not sure what answers will tell us

Unfortunately, due to the timing of the elections and enrollment periods for schools, it's not clear what could be concluded from the data.

I know of families that liked the choice plan and registered with wcpss, but due to change in BOE based on November election results, decided to hedge their bets and go through the processes with other options in Winter/Spring (i.e. charter lotteries, checking into private options). Even though they got their first choice in the choice process, they also won charter lotteries. Based on their suspicions (well-founded it seems) of what the BOE majority would do and where it would take wcpss going forward, they decided to get out while they could and went with one of their non-wcpss options.

The official private school

The official private school and homeschool numbers for this school year won't be reported out until tne end of the school year. Charter school numbers would be in sonner since they go to DPI.

Chair Hill speaks out

On the Opinon Shop blog- N&O website

There will also be a story

There will also be a story in Saturday's paper along with my pretty lengthy blog post about the meeting running in the morning.

the projected increase was 2.54% vs actual of 1.92%, or a

difference of 0.62%.  How is that possbile?  Who can we point fingers at?  I'm sure that if you reviewed previous BOE meetings, Dr. Martin and Ms Evans warned the staff about this.

Bad use of Math/Statistics

Bad use of Math/Statistics -- sort of like Obama and Romney.

You don't look at the difference between enrollment and projected enrollment -- that takes into account that 0 is a possible value for total enrollment.

You look at the projected increase vs the actual increase. Projected increase was 3821 vs an actual increase of 2821, which makes the projection off by 26.2%

Same difference

.62 on 2.54 is a 24% miss.  Basically the same as doing it your way. One thing is for sure lower growth and stability will lead to academic growth, with or without ipads.

"... lower growth and

"... lower growth and stability will lead to academic growth... "

Wow, that is amazing! I would love to read that research.

Read more here: http://blogs.newsobserver.com/comment/reply/50994/273387#storylink=cpy

Growth is down 910

Growth is down 910 students--that is one ENTIRE school that we won't have to build!

Growth of 2821

By your math that is 3 more schools needed

"growth falls 910 students short of projections"

Man, that is the surprise of the day right there.

Good thing the bond is on hold until 2014 or beyond!

Bond in 2014

Well at 2000 students a year and funds not available to start building until 2014. If you can open a school by 2015, that will be 3 years of growth and an increase of 6,000 students. That would be probably a half dozen schools needed depending on size of schools.

Convert all traditional schools to year round

and let parents decide if they want the morning or evening shift for HS.

Bingo, no new schools needed.

I hate the idea of forced

I hate the idea of forced year-round schools, whole industries as well as valued traditions are built around the traditional school year, but I could see using the schools in summer months for kids who chose to take classes then (to graduate sooner or retake a course to improve their grade), remedial courses, and maybe some courses that the parents must pay for, like college-prep languages or AP courses. However, I do like the shift idea -- by choice -- to take better advantage of facilities.

How do you pick a school?

It would have to be like the old way to select year round schools. Nobody wants to convert so you make the next HS a two shift school

It's not going to be up to "nobody"

it's up to this board.

If this board can't pass a bond, and they can't no matter how delusional Hill, or anyone else, wants to be, they will have no choice but to absolutely maximize the space we currently have. You can't wait years for new schools to be built and then say those will make the shift, they all need to make the shift. Now. They can't wait any longer and need to fill all YR schools now, make the others YR and move to split shift high schools starting with the next assignment plan. Then after one year they can evaluate capacity and adjust where needed.

Only then should there be any talk of a bond. 

New schools have to be built

New schools have to be built and older schools have to have renovations.  That's just the facts.

If the bond fails, then the CC will have to figure out some other way to pay for contruction....unless the county is going to stop handing out residential building permits.

Most likely scenario

Bond fails....  School board goes back with its tail between its legs, county commissioners fund 1-2 new schools just out of general tax revenue, time passes, then there's a new bond referendum that passes.

I have a much different take

Bond fails, next year, 2014, doesn't matter, the next time it comes up it fails. Board bitches and moans, Evans & Martin throw public tantrums, but this time can't blame their Super, and they force all ES and MS to MYR.

Then they have to deal with the HS onslaught, and split shifts are the only answer.

I have no doubt both will come to pass.  Comes right out of the Head-Millberg-Clark-Gill Socialism Handbook.

That approach was tried in the last bond

There was a conversion of a lot of schools to year round because of capacity but it did not work because the mandatory assignments were not used. You have to do mandatory assignments to fill schools with a calendar the parents do not like. Same for split shift high schools. One shift will be more popular than the other so choice will not be an option. Lottery selection might be an option.

Since you're another "Johnny Come Lately"

let me clue you in, I ALREADY KNEW THAT.

My point is get ready for it again, it IS coming.  There will be no bond support from 3/4's of the people in this county, not now, not ever, they are through supporting that farce, so the next thing you should buckle up for is this board threatening and converting most of the rest of our ES and MS and then taking HS parents on head-on.

You are correct, choice will not be an option this time around.  You and everyone else will do as this board says.  Mandatory is your future and if you voted for any of the NEW majority, thank yourself first!

Then thank your new board and GSIW for what's coming.

And hope they stick you on track two!

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About the blogger

T. Keung Hui covers Wake schools.