Enrollment trends were discussed at the October 21 meeting of the San Juan School Board. October 1 enrollment counts are used as the basis for a number of decisions.
The school district operates a dozen schools from La Sal to Navajo Mountain. Enrollment figures have dropped at each school over the past decade.
Enrollment topped 3,370 in 1996 and bottomed out at 2,844 on October 1, 2007. The 2,953 students enrolled on October 1, 2009 represents growth of 109 students over the past two years.
Construction is expected to begin in 2010 on a new elementary school at Monument Valley, adjacent to Monument Valley High School. When the new school opens, it is expected that Mexican Hat Elementary School will close. Officials hope for an increase in enrollment when the new facility opens because the brand new faciilty will be located closer to population centers than the current aging facility in Mexican Hat.
Enrollment trends vary from community to community. In addition, a single large class can have a significant effect on enrollment at the small schools in the district.
In the past year, enrollment has grown by 66 percent in La Sal, from 15 students in 2008 to 25 students this month.
Enrollment at Mexican Hat Elementary School has grown by 33 students over the past two years. This represents a 19 percent increase.
Over the past two years, enrollment has grown by 20 percent at Bluff Elementary.
There have been modest gains in enrollment at Monticello, San Juan and Monument Valley high schools, while Navajo Mountain and Whitehorse high schools have had a two year drop in enrollment of 33 and 17 percent, respectively.