The Advisory Committee met on Monday morning to review the enrollment projections for our four elementary schools. The consensus that emerged is that we do not need to redistrict for 2015-16, and the small growth that may occur in future years at Pocopson can be accommodated without changing elementary school boundaries.
The committee reviewed the 10-year projections developed by our expert consultants, and paid particular attention to the projections for the next five years. Looking at enrollment as a whole, the high-end (worst case scenario) projection shows a 1% increase in enrollment per year, maxing out in 2018-2019, then declining back below current 2014 enrollment by 2023. Using less aggressive growth factors shows little to no growth in future enrollment district-wide.
However, the projection does show that the enrollment at Pocopson will continue to be near capacity. Current enrollment at PES is 652 students. For the 2015-2016 school year, the most aggressive model predicts enrollment of 668, while the least aggressive model predicts enrollment of 649. And looking out further into the future, the peak is predicted to be in 2018-19. The high-growth rate models predict enrollment to top out in low 700s, while less aggressive models predict enrollment to top out around 675.
The conclusions the committee drew from the data were:
- Enrollment for 2015-2016 will be about the same as this year
- The most likely peak enrollment scenarios for PES will only result in an additional 20-35 students vs. current levels
- Even if the high-end projections were to occur, the increase would be temporary
In discussing the alternatives, the committee arrived at the following conclusions:
- No adjustment is needed to boundaries for the 2015-2016 school year.
- Should PES temporarily increase in future years, most parents would rather address the temporary enrollment increase with temporary measures, rather than redraw the elementary school boundaries and impact PES families
- Administration believes that a further small uptick in future enrollment at PES can be accommodated without impacting the quality of our programs and the experience of our students.
- To ensure that PES continues to operate well with increased enrollment, some adjustments to staffing and/or other resources may be recommended by the Administration for PES.
These conclusions will be discussed further at the Community Meeting on Redistricting, to be held Tuesday evening, December 16, at 7pm in the UCF District office on the UHS campus. The report will be available online Monday evening on the UCFSD Board website, found here.
I support the conclusions of the committee, and look forward to having further discussion and hearing from additional members of our community tomorrow evening. Please come out and let your opinion be heard.
And I would like to give a special thanks to our committee members, especially our parents, for getting involved in this important study, and lending their expertise to our community!