School enrollments up slightly in both districts

Big Horn County School District No. One reported a bump in attendance at Rocky Mountain preschool, elementary school and high school. Middle school enrollments on the first day of school were down six students over last year.

On the last day of school in 2012 the preschool had 27 students enrolled. The school showed an increase of five students on the first day of school in August.

RMES also showed a slight increase with 203 enrolled on the last day of school in June and 205 enrolled on the first day of school in August.

Lovell Elementary Principal Cheri Hoffman looks at a craft shown to her by Ashton Harper (left) and Alyssa Rael on the first day of school Tuesday. At the right is KayCee Twitchell.

RMHS showed the largest gain with an increase of 12 students since school ended in June, taking the total enrollments at the high school from 117 in June to 129 on the first day of school in August.

The online school Connections Academy, managed by the district, is showing steady growth. Eight teachers provide online classrooms to students from all over the state. Home-schooled students, with parent supervision, use the school extensively.

At the end of the school year, Connections Academy had 167 students enrolled. Enrollments leaped to 194 at the start of the school year. Additionally, 88 students have been pre-approved to attend the online classes, one has been approved and more than 40 inquiries have been recorded recently from students interested in attending the school.

In Burlington, which is also part of District One, attendance was down from 17 to 9 at the preschool. The elementary school showed an increase from 92 to 99 students. The middle school saw a slight bump in enrollment from 57 to 59. The high school showed a gain from 82 to 86 students.

Increase in District Two

In Big Horn County School District No. Two, Supt. Dan Coe reported an overall increase of students enrolled in the district of nine students.

Lovell Elementary School increased enrollment from 322 at the end of the last school year to 325 on the first day of school. The middle school had an increase from 158 to 159, the high school from 206 to 211.

Since funding for schools in Wyoming is based on “Average Daily Membership,” commonly referred to as ADM, school officials carefully monitor enrollments and plan appropriately for funding and student needs.

Under Wyoming law, if a student is absent more than 10 days in a row without notice, the student is removed from the enrollment figures and funding to the school is decreased accordingly.

By Patti Carpenter

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