Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Interesting Enrollment Trends

Every now and then, I run across school data that I find incredibly intriguing.  In reviewing DSMS student enrollment numbers earlier today, I discovered some trends I thought you might find interesting.

In the last 3 school years, the total student enrollment at DSMS is as follows:

2010/2011 - 703 students
2011/2012 - 705 students
2012/2013 - 685 students

Total student enrollment consists of students who reside within the DSMS homeschool boundaries plus any open enrollment and transfer students who choose to attend.  In the last 3 years, the homeschool vs. open enrollment figures are as follows:

2010/2011 - 525 homeschool / 160 open enrollment or transfer
2011/2012 - 490 homeschool / 215 open enrollment or transfer
2012/2013 - 456 homeschool / 229 open enrollment or transfer

We have known for years that the number of middle school-aged students (and children in general) in our DSMS community has been steadily declining.  We have anticipated a drop in total enrollment for a while.  Instead, our total enrollment has stayed fairly static.  The reason is the increase in the percentage of open enrollment/transfer students each year.  As students in our homeschool boundaries has decreased, the number of open enrollment and transfer students has increased dramatically:

2010/2011 - 22.75% of total student enrollment was open enrolled or transfer
2011/2012 - 30.5% of total student enrollment was open enrolled or transfer
2012/2013 - 33.4% of total student enrollment is open enrolled or transfer

I'm guessing the trend will continue into next year.  I wouldn't be surprised if we open next school year with an open enrollment/transfer population between 37%-40%.

What does it mean?  I'm not sure yet.

I hope it means we offer a product that families find exciting.
I hope it means we offer opportunities other schools don't or can't.
I hope it means families believe in our mission and vision as passionately as we do.

Regardless of what the trends mean, we will continue to do whatever we can to help raise happy, productive, intelligent and respectful young men and women.

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