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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Pasco schools show slight enrollment increase on first day



Pasco County's overall 2012-13 student enrollment count is projected to be 98 less than it was in 2011-12.

The first day of classes on Monday indicated an increase is on the way instead.

Planning director Chris Williams reported that with all but two schools reporting, the district had 185 more students for the first day back (62,757) than showed up on the first day a year ago. Head counts generally increase over the first several days of classes, settling about two weeks in. That could lead the district to an uptick after a few years of essentially flat enrollment.

Most of the early increases came at charter schools. Williams reported that charters as a group saw their student numbers rise by 170, while the traditional schools went up by just 15 overall. Some interesting tidbits within the report:

• Oakstead Elementary remained the district's largest elementary with 1,020 students, up even as it was rezoned to reduce crowding there. Odessa Elementary, which took many Oakstead students, saw its first day numbers rise too.
• Seven Oaks Elementary, which has had students zoned out a couple of times, had its numbers up by 82 from a year earlier and also looks poised to surpass 1,000 students.
• Seven Springs Middle School, projected for 1,317 students, already sat at 1,359 students after Day One. That made it the second-biggest middle school behind John Long Middle (1,573), which had more students than nine of the district's 13 high schools.
• Wiregrass Ranch High continued to be the district's most populous high school, with 1,893 students. That's down slightly, though, perhaps meaning that the district's three-year plan to ease population down is working.

The district has until early October to determine where all the students are and if it's meeting class size requirements. It has been advertising several open teaching jobs lately to ensure it meets the mark. After the 20th day, students could see their teachers change if reallocations are required. 

[Last modified: Tuesday, August 21, 2012 6:58am]


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