Enrollment declines across Grand County | SkyHiNews.com

Enrollment declines across Grand County

Tonya Bina
Sky-Hi News

Both Grand County school districts reported a decrease in enrollment on the first day back to school, creating some early anxiety about school budgets.

Although the state doesn’t take enrollment numbers officially until Oct. 1, early indicators show that there may be fewer students in classrooms countywide.

East Grand School District counted 44 fewer students enrolled. Translated into a potential loss in state funding after Oct. 1, the district calculated it could see a $77,577 un-budgeted shortfall if enrollment numbers don’t improve.

Factoring in the 20 students who enrolled in the district for the first time this year, the net total of students who did not return is more than 60 – a possible indicator of families moving out of the county, perhaps from impacts of the recession.

But East Grand Superintendent Nancy Karas said there is one disclaimer in current enrollment numbers: The fact that Indian Peaks Charter School hasn’t yet opened its doors for the school year. Although Indian Peaks enrollment was factored into the tally, it was by anticipated counts only, Karas said, so officials are still awaiting actual numbers.

At West Grand School District, Superintendent Kevin Chalfant reported a decrease of 14 students halfway into the first week of school, a greater decrease than the budget anticipated.

“We are a few students short of what we were hoping for,” Chalfant said.

The decline in enrollment could translate into $25,000 less to the district if more students don’t enroll.

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