School enrollment drops again, lowest in 5 years


Forty fewer students walked through Blaine school district doors this year as the Borderites returned to full-time, masked, in-person learning.

According to district data, enrollment has decreased by 40 students when compared to the start of last year. Last year, 2,089 students enrolled while 2,049 have enrolled this September. It’s the lowest the district’s enrollment has been in five years.

The district has seen a distinct dip in enrollment the past two years. When students returned for hybrid learning in September 2020, the district saw 57 fewer students enroll than in September 2019. The past two years account for a 4.5 percent decrease in enrollment.

District finance director Amber Porter said in a September 27 school board meeting she does not see the district needing to adjust or remove any school learning programs.

Porter told The Northern Light in an email the district expected enrollment to decline again this year like it did the year before and that it would not affect school operations this year. “Fortunately, the district currently has the financial flexibility to continue operating without making expenditure adjustments in the current year,” she wrote.

Unfortunately, because state education apportionment is enrollment driven, next school year’s funding will be affected, Porter said.


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