IBJNews

Fort Wayne school district surges by IPS in enrollment

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Enrollment in Fort Wayne Community Schools is projected to surpass enrollment in Indianapolis Public Schools this year, making it Indiana's largest school district.

Preliminary numbers show the Fort Wayne district has 30,622 students, or about 500 more than a preliminary enrollment of 30,128 for IPS.

Final enrollment numbers won't be confirmed until later this year.

IPS has experienced a gradual decline in enrollment in recent years, allowing the Fort Wayne district to catch up.

The Indianapolis district had posted an enrollment of 33,521 students in 2009. As recently as 2002, IPS had about 8,600 more students than the Fort Wayne district.

Indiana uses the enrollment number from districts' fall-count day to calculate funding for districts. The preliminary numbers submitted by every Indiana district must be reconciled by state education officials.

OfficialS said Fort Wayne's and Indianapolis' public school districts are not as distressed as some had anticipated. Both districts predicted losses resulting in part from the state's expansion of private school vouchers and additional charter schools opening.

Fort Wayne Community Schools lost about 350 students compared with last year, mostly students transferring to private schools accepting vouchers, said district spokeswoman Krista Stockman.

"We budgeted for a loss of about 500 students, and while it's certainly not a good thing to lose 350, we feel we are holding relatively steady," Stockman said.

The district actually had a net gain of 10 charter students, meaning more students returned to Fort Wayne Community Schools from charter schools than the number who left to attend charter schools, she said.

Indiana took over four IPS schools in May and placed them under the administration of two special management teams that will oversee the schools, also diverting millions in funding away from IPS.

Sixty percent of the students in those four schools decided to stay with IPS by enrolling in one of the district's magnet schools or a boundary IPS school, said IPS spokesman John Althardt.

"We were very encouraged by that," he said.

Althardt said the Indianapolis district has worked hard to earn parents' trust and stay competitive against both charter schools and voucher offers. IPS' figures show a slight increase in the number of kindergarten students, which proves the hard work is paying off, Althardt said.

The same education choices exist in Allen County, including a disproportionate number of private schools compared with the rest of the state, Stockman said. Last year, the state issued 392 vouchers in Allen County alone, she said.

Although it's possible that becoming the largest district in Indiana could bring added clout with legislators who draft education policy and budget, the Fort Wayne district will continue on the path that has brought it a number of recent successes, Stockman said.

 

 

ADVERTISEMENT

  • Misleading title
    It's seem misleading to say that one thing surged past another, when in reality it simply had a lesser decline than the other. The title seems to suggest that enrollment actually grew in the Fort Wayne schools.
  • Half the truth
    Why didn't your article mention the fact that IPS lost over 1000 students due to the takeover of 3 high schools and 1 middle school - but about 3000 less than was expected?

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. It is nice and all that the developer grew up here and lives here, but do you think a company that builds and rehabs cottage-style homes has the chops to develop $150 Million of office, retail, and residential? I'm guessing they will quickly be over their skis and begging the city for even more help... This project should occur organically and be developed by those that can handle the size and scope of something like this as several other posters have mentioned.

  2. It amazes me how people with apparently zero knowledge of free markets or capitalism feel the need to read and post on a business journal website. Perhaps the Daily Worker would suit your interests better. It's definitely more sympathetic to your pro government theft views. It's too bad the Star is so awful as I'm sure you would find a much better home there.

  3. In other cities, expensive new construction projects are announced by real estate developers. In Carmel, they are announced by the local mayor. I am so, so glad I don't live in Carmel's taxbase--did you see that Carmel, a small Midwest suburb, has $500 million in debt?? That's unreal! The mayor thinks he's playing with Lego sets and Monopoly money here! Let these projects develop organically without government/taxpayer backing! Also, from a design standpoint, the whole town of Carmel looks comical. Grand, French-style buildings and promenades, sitting next to tire yards. Who do you guys think you are? Just my POV as a recent transplant to Indy.

  4. GeorgeP, you mention "necessities". Where in the announcement did it say anything about basic essentials like groceries? None of the plans and "vision" have basic essentials listed and nothing has been built. Traffic WILL be a nightmare. There is no east/west road capacity. GeorgeP, you also post on www.carmelchatter.com and your posts have repeatedly been proven wrong. You seem to have a fair amount of inside knowledge. Do you work on the third floor of Carmel City Hal?

  5. I don't know about the commuter buses...but it's a huge joke to see these IndyGo buses with just one or two passengers. Absolutely a disgusting waste of TAXPAYER money. Get some cojones and stop funding them. These (all of them) council members work for you. FIRE THEM!

ADVERTISEMENT