Pinellas school enrollment continues to dwindle
Enrollment in Pinellas County public schools is in a free fall.
Fewer than 100,000 students in Kindergarten through 12th grade -- 99,651, to be exact -- are enrolled in either a traditional or charter school in Pinellas, according to a 10-day count released on Friday. After charter schools are factored out, that figure drops to 93,717 -- the lowest enrollment the district has seen in years.
Last year's overall count was 100,680 (or 94,048 without charters).
Pinellas' 18 charter schools saw a slight bump of roughly 200 kids, up to a new total of 5,934. That may change next year, as the School Board this fall will consider two proposals to open charter schools in St. Petersburg in 2018.
The number of Pinellas students participating in Florida Tax Credit scholarships, which sponsor low-income students to attend participating private schools, are on the rise. Step Up for Students, the state's largest scholarship funding organization, reported that more than 3,800 of those scholarships went to Pinellas students, up from 3,600 last year.