Schools At risk Of Closing Due To Enrollment Loss

A new report has revealed a disturbing trend that is threatening the future of public education: thousands of school districts across the country are facing potential closure due to a massive decline in enrollment. The warning comes after a recent analysis of national enrollment data by the prestigious Brookings Institution, in collaboration with The 74, a leading education news outlet.

The findings of the report are alarming, to say the least. Researchers at Brookings discovered that elementary and middle schools have experienced a staggering 20% drop in enrollment over the past few years. This means that nearly one-fifth of students who were enrolled in these schools have disappeared. As a result, many school districts are now facing a financial crisis, unable to sustain their operations with dwindling student numbers.

One such district is Jackson Public Schools, which recently voted to close 11 schools and merge two others due to a drastic decline in enrollment. Some of these schools have lost up to 30% of their students since 2018. Sadly, this is not an isolated case. Across the country, countless school districts are facing a similar fate, with enrollment declines becoming a widespread phenomenon.

According to Brookings fellow Sofoklis Goulas, “enrollment declines are everywhere.” The report also highlighted some of the states that are expected to see a continued decline in enrollment over the next decade, including Oregon, New Mexico, and West Virginia. In states with large metropolitan cities like Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and Albuquerque, the decline in enrollment has been even more severe, reaching up to 20%. This trend is not limited to one region, as several districts in the south, such as Memphis-Shelby County Schools in Tennessee and DeKalb County School District near Atlanta, have also experienced significant enrollment declines.

The pandemic may have exacerbated this issue, but it is not solely to blame. The report cited other factors such as record-low birth rates and the high cost of living, especially in places like Silicon Valley, as contributing to the decline in enrollment. However, its probably a safe guess that the far-left CRT curriculum and the other polices that are going after our children have also played a big role in the decline. Many families have been forced to leave traditional public schools, seeking alternatives such as private schools and charter schools. As a result, there are now over 1,400 schools in California alone that have seen a decline in enrollment of at least 20% since the pandemic began.

This enrollment crisis has put immense pressure on school administrators who are now faced with tough decisions. To balance their budgets, they have had to make difficult choices such as cutting extracurricular activities, reducing staff, or merging classrooms. In San Francisco Unified School District, enrollment has dropped from 53,000 students in 2012 to just 49,000 students today. The district is now facing a severe financial crisis and a staff shortage, making it challenging to provide quality education to its students.

While traditional public schools are struggling with declining enrollment, the same cannot be said for charter schools. A separate report by the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools has shown that charter schools have made significant gains over the past four years. Enrollment in charter schools has increased by 9%, adding over 300,000 new students, while district-run public schools have lost 1.5 million students since the start of the pandemic. Shockingly, enrollment in traditional public schools has not recovered over the past three years, signaling a clear trend toward charter schools.

The decline in enrollment in traditional public schools should serve as a wake-up call for policymakers and educators. It is clear that parents are seeking alternatives for their children, and charter schools have emerged as a popular choice. As the report by the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools highlights, parents are choosing charter schools for their innovative methods, quality education, flexibility, and perhaps their non-woke agendas. It is time for traditional public schools to take note and work towards improving their standards to retain students and maintain their relevance in the education system. If they fail to do so, they risk being left behind in the wake of the charter school boom.

Fox News