School enrollment numbers for secondary students are down again this year.
The number of classes at Timberline this year is 76 while it was 102 last year, and at Carihi 100 classes are in session this year, while 151 were last year.
School district 72 superintendent of instruction Tom Longridge said he expects to see a drop in enrollment numbers for the next few years as well.
“They’ll be going down for probably the next four to five years but you’ll see the elementary numbers start to rise,” said Longridge. “But we’re still going to see an overall decline, particularly in secondary.”
Although the final tally is not yet in, last year’s projected enrollment total for the district in 2011/2012 is 5,249. And Longridge said the numbers appear to be quite close to what was predicted.
The total projected enrollment for 2012/2013 is 5,147 students and 5,097 students for 2013/2014.
This school year the grade configuration was changed in anticipation of less secondary students.
“That’s why we looked at reconfiguring and having that reconfiguration process last year, in keeping our secondary schools viable and examining how we’re providing middle school education as well,” explained Longridge.
Elementary schools now have kindergarten to Grade 5 students, middle schools have Grade 6-8 and secondary schools have Grade 9-12.