Updated 10 a.m. – Statewide school enrollment grew 1.3 percent this year, up 10,949 students to 854,265.
The growth is in line with the rates of recent years, although the student population increased 2 percent in 2008-09.
The official enrollment number, which is a key factor in annual school finance calculations, is based on attendance counts taken in a small time window around Oct. 1 each year.
That so-called single day count has been criticized as not accurately reflecting actual enrollment across a whole school year and for not capturing student movement among schools. There may be legislation at the Capitol this year to change the counting system.
The largest increases were reported for the Denver Public Schools, schools supervised by the Charter School Institute and for online programs. (Two small districts, Hi-Plains and Pawnee, reported increases of more than 20 percent.)
DPS added 2,573 students, or 3.29 percent, while CSI schools gained 2,525 students, a 31.64 percent increase. Those schools now have 10,506 students.
Online programs now enroll 16,221 students, a 6.4 percent increase from 2010-11. There were only 1,987 online students in 2002-03.
The Department of Education reported a 10.6 percent in students identified as multi-racial and an 8.3 percent increase in students identified as Asian. Only minor changes were reported in other ethnic and racial groups.
This year 41.27 percent of K-12 students are eligible for free and reduced-price lunch compared to 40.3 percent in 2010-11.
The enrollment report reflects student headcounts, including students who aren’t enrolled full time.
Get full information on 2011-12 enrollment here.
Members of the Jeffco Public Schools board of education will fan out across the county Saturday for five simultaneous community forums on how best to trim $50 million to $60 million from the district’s budget over the next two years. The forums will run from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.
The district Citizens’ Budget Advisory Council has forwarded a list of 82 specific suggestions for cuts and revenue increases. The vast majority of the ideas are cuts.
The five locations:
- Arvada High School, 7951 W. 65th Ave., Arvada
- Columbine High School, 6201 S. Pierce St., Littleton
- Evergreen High School, 29300 Buffalo Park Rd., Evergreen
- Ralston Valley High School, 13355 W. 80th Ave., Arvada
- Bear Creek High School, 9800 W. Dartmouth Pl., Lakewood
Budget forums will be facilitated by board members and assisted by district staff. Forum participants will take part in small group discussions; the forums are open to all. “Keep in mind that no final decisions about the budget have been made,” according to the district news release.
What’s on tap:
Denver Public Schools board members will meet with the Student Board of Education at noon in the board’s usual ground-floor meeting space at 900 Grant St.
In keeping with the spirit of what has been declared National School Choice week, “School Choice in DPS” is slated for 3:30 p.m. at the office of Education Reform Now, 2543 California St., in Denver. Among the guests expected is nationally prominent Democratic consultant Joe Trippi. Guests are asked to RSVP to Rachel Gordon at Education Reform Now, firstname.lastname@example.org. Space is limited.
U.S. Rep. Jared Polis, D-Boulder, will tour Casey Middle School, the first LEED Platinum Certified school in Colorado, with Nancy Sutley, President Obama’s principal environmental advisor and chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality. During the visit, they will learn how the school’s energy upgrades including solar panels and a new ground source heat exchange system are saving it more than 50 percent on its energy bill even as the school has expanded its facilities by 40 percent. The tour begins at 1:30 p.m. at the school, 1301 High St. in Boulder.
Good reads from elsewhere:
Public health officials continue to test students and staff at Longmont High School after the discovery of latent tuberculosis at the school, reports the Longmont Times-Call.
State Board of Education Chairman Bob Schaffer, who is also the principal of Liberty Common High School in Fort Collins, endorsed the work of Neenan Co. as the school prepares to break ground for an expansion next week. The Fort Collins Coloradoan reported that the school built “an extra layer” of engineering oversight into its contract with Neenan, which is embroiled in a state investigation into the quality of its work at 15 other sites.
The EdNews’ Churn is a daily roundup of briefs, notes and meetings in the world of Colorado education. To submit an item for consideration in this listing, please email us at EdNews@EdNewsColorado.org.