Archive for Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Enrollment rises 2 percent in Lawrence school district

September 21, 2011


Lawrence school district is teaching more kids and providing another virtual grade level than a year ago.

And it is doing so while receiving less money from the state.

The district reported an official enrollment Tuesday of 11,272 students in grades kindergarten through 12, an increase of 219 students, or 2 percent, from this time last year.

A year ago, of course, each student enrolled meant receiving $4,012 from the state, a “base state aid per pupil” that dropped to $3,937 earlier this year and to $3,780 in effect for 2011-12.

And after closing Wakarusa Valley School, investing in bulk-purchasing services and consolidating other operations to save money for this year, district administrators and members of the Lawrence school board know they’ll continue to face financing challenges going forward.

One thing they do know: It sure beats the alternative.

“That’s the primary way we get our dollars,” Superintendent Rick Doll said last month, as preliminary numbers indicated that enrollment was on the rise.

This year’s enrollment report reflects a change in grade levels at each school: Elementaries no longer have sixth grade; junior highs now are middle schools, for grades 6-8; and high schools now include freshmen.

With that in mind — elementaries have one fewer grade level, middle schools have the same number of grade levels, and high schools have one more grade level — here is a look at each school’s total enrollment, and enrollment by grade level, and comparison with the total from a year ago:

High schools

  • Free State: 1,509 students, including 381 freshmen, 370 sophomores, 368 juniors and 390 seniors. Last year: 1,064 sophomores, juniors and seniors.
  • Lawrence: 1,525 students, including 342 freshmen, 388 sophomores, 392 juniors and 403 seniors. Last year: 1,206 sophomores, juniors and seniors.
  • Lawrence Virtual: 246 students, including 103 freshmen, 80 sophomores and 63 juniors. Last year: 37 sophomores.

Middle schools

  • Liberty Memorial Central: 434 students, including 137 in sixth, 160 in seventh and 136 in eighth; one student is co-enrolled. Last year: 410 in grades 7-9.
  • South: 608 students, including 213 in sixth, 189 in seventh and 206 in eighth. Last year: 589 in grades 7-9.
  • Southwest: 633 students, including 183 in sixth, 242 in seventh and 207 in eighth; one student is co-enrolled. Last year: 637 in grades 7-9.
  • West: 573 students, including 179 in sixth, 201 in seventh and 193 in eighth. Last year: 551 in grades 7-9.
  • Virtual: 440 students, including 140 in sixth, 140 in seventh and 160 in eighth. Last year: 366 in grades 7-9.


  • Broken Arrow: 305 students, including 59 in kindergarten, 47 in first, 44 in second, 42 in third, 58 in fourth and 55 in fifth. Last year: 285 in grades K-6.
  • Cordley: 294 students, including 44 in kindergarten, 50 in first, 48 in second, 57 in third, 52 in fourth and 42 in fifth; one student is co-enrolled. Last year: 299 in grades K-6.
  • Deerfield: 471 students, including 70 in kindergarten, 68 in first, 88 in second, 80 in third, 77 in fourth and 84 in fifth; four students are co-enrolled. Last year: 530 in grades K-6.
  • Hillcrest: 356 students, including 59 in kindergarten, 71 in first, 58 in second, 49 in third, 57 in fourth and 61 in fifth; one student is co-enrolled. Last year: 386 in grades K-6.
  • Kennedy: 222 students, including 50 in kindergarten, 32 in first, 45 in second, 34 in third, 21 in fourth and 40 in fifth. Last year: 265 in grades K-6.
  • Langston Hughes: 463 students, including 68 in kindergarten, 81 in first, 79 in second, 76 in third, 79 in fourth and 78 in fifth; two students are co-enrolled. Last year: 519 in grades K-6.
  • New York: 183 students, including 36 in kindergarten, 29 in first, 32 in second, 25 in third, 24 in fourth and 37 in fifth. Last year: 200 in grades K-6.
  • Pinckney: 231 students, including 39 in kindergarten, 42 in first, 39 in second, 39 in third, 37 in fourth and 32 in fifth; three students are co-enrolled. Last year: 273 in grades K-6.
  • Prairie Park: 344 students, including 58 in kindergarten, 59 in first, 54 in second, 52 in third, 61 in fourth and 59 in fifth. Last year: 420 in grades K-6.
  • Quail Run: 417 students, including 60 in kindergarten, 65 in first, 59 in second, 81 in third, 73 in fourth and 77 in fifth; two students are co-enrolled. Last year: 476 in grades K-6.
  • Schwegler: 379 students, including 73 in kindergarten, 51 in first, 66 in second, 79 in third, 49 in fourth and 58 in fifth; three students are co-enrolled. Last year: 406 in grades K-6.
  • Sunflower: 491 students, including 90 in kindergarten, 69 in first, 78 in second, 82 in third, 85 in fourth and 84 in fifth; three students are co-enrolled. Last year: 480 in grades K-6.
  • Sunset Hill: 258 students, including 38 in kindergarten, 33 in first, 43 in second, 48 in third, 50 in fourth and 46 in fifth. Last year: 292 in grades K-6.
  • Woodlawn: 229 students, including 39 in kindergarten, 35 in first, 46 in second, 39 in third, 33 in fourth and 36 in fifth; one student is co-enrolled. Last year: 240 in grades K-6.
  • Virtual: 661 students, including 93 in kindergarten, 90 in first, 104 in second, 118 in third, 124 in fourth and 132 in fifth. Last year: 928 in grades K-6.


Jeanne Cunningham 6 years, 7 months ago

So, of course, instead of figuring out where/how to find some more funding and/or more efficient ways to do the business part of schools, let's close yet more buildings, squish yet more people into less space. Why not have those people spend time figuring out a GOOD solution to the financing problem? Anyone who is over the age ot 20 knows that there are always ups and downs as far as budgets. Money comes. Money goes. But, subjecting kids in the "low" times to lesser circumstances, only to go nuts in the "boom" times - EX: big fancy athletic fields, bleachers, locker rooms, etc. is just cutting off noses to spite faces. Let advertisers put their ads on textbooks, lockers, labels in the library books, the school buses and signs for all I care. There always seems to be money available for the frills, but not for what IS truly important - learning the basics. Find alumni donors to put up plaques in the halls and auditoriums. BE CREATIVE!!!! Isn't that what schools are teaching? Didn't anyone else catch that part when they were in school? And, for those who say the laws don't allow certain funding methods.... Remember THAT when you vote!!! Get people into the capitol and legislature who can fix that, too.

How about using those buildings for other things in school off times? Find sponsors/volunteers to have open play/exercise in the gym? Let kids go do homework in the library. Feed hungry people in the cafeterias. Look at what school buildings are used for in small towns. They are much better utilized and therfore much more valued - as they should be. Instead of building even more separate buildings for "Recreation Centers", why not utilize the spaces already built for that in each school - in each neighborhood - already withing walking distance to most kids. If contractors object because they won't be making that money, hire them to maintain and repair the existing buildings. We have become and are becoming even more a "throw-away" society. Don't let a generation of kids become included in what gets tossed!!!!!

PennyBrite 6 years, 7 months ago

any enrollment figures from the private schools in Lawrence? Since the economy is bad, did the numbers of students at at private schools go down, raising the enrollment in public schools? anyone know?

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