ENROLLMENT GROWTH SURPASSES LAST FALL!
First day enrollment in Bismarck Public Schools has reached 12,410 students--361 more than last year-which is about the size of Dorothy Moses Elementary School. The year before, BPS had 12,049 students, which was an increase of 273 over the previous year. The year before that, fall of 2012, the district saw 359 additional students.
School Superintendent Tamara Uselman says, "Declining oil prices don't seem to be impacting enrollment in our district. Many people are coming here for jobs are in sales and health care. In the past three years, we've had enough additional students (993) to overflow one of our middle schools!"
This is the 12th year in a row that BPS has seen enrollment increases. Most of the increase is still at the kindergarten through 5th grade level, with 142 more students spread among the district's 17 elementary schools. The most growth over last fall was at the district's newer K-5 schools: Liberty (+44), Sunrise (+40), Lincoln (+32). Those three schools are almost at capacity even with classroom additions at Liberty and Sunrise.*
The 3 middle schools grew by a total of 121 students, with Simle experiencing more than half of the middle school growth with 77 more students. Horizon is up 29 and Wachter is up 15 on opening day. Horizon and Simle are overcapacity; Horizon by about 50 students; Simle by about 100.*
The high school level in Bismarck Public Schools increased by 98 students. Enrollment at Bismarck High is 1,331 students, Century has 1,349, and Legacy opened with 815 students in grades 9-11. LHS will graduate its first senior class next school year.
Tamara Uselman says the school district will start planning meetings again this fall to deal with continued student enrollment growth. Each school will be represented on the committee.
*Liberty capacity (625) vs. 2015 fall enrollment (583)
*Sunrise capacity (625) vs. 2015 fall enrollment (619)
*Lincoln capacity (536) vs. 2015 fall enrollment (533)
*Horizon capacity (900) vs. 2015 fall enrollment (953)
*Simle capacity (850) vs. 2015 fall enrollment (953)
*Wachter capacity (900) vs. 2015 fall enrollment (872)